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Full text of "The acme declamation book"

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LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, 

_ r v^T£6T 

Shelf. 



MIS 



UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. 



CONTA 



THE-ACME 

Declamation -Book 

CONTAINING 

BEAUTIFUL SELECTIONS FOR ALMOST ANY 

OCCASION, AND SUITABLE FOR ANY 

AGE AND FOR EITHER SEX. 



#t 



COMPILED And edited 

By B. A. HATHAWAY 



Author of a Series of Books 




THE • SCHOOL - SUPPLY • COMPANY 
LEBANON, OHIO. 



Copyrighted, 1888, 

HY 

11. A. HATHAWAY. 



ELECTROTYPEO, PRINTED. *?? 

BOONE) B-r THE ALDINE PRINTINQ WOKKJ 

2+fl WALNCIT ST., CINCINNATI, o. 



PREFATORY NOTE. 



THE constant inquiry for a racy Declamation Book, and 
the insufficiency of those in print, have induced the 
compiler to prepare this volume. It is difficult to find a 
work of this kind but what is filled with dry, uninteresting 
selections, many being too lengthy, and others so obscure 
in meaning that neither the speaker nor the audience can 
comprehend them. It is claimed for this book that the 
selections are among the best that can be found in the 
English language. They are short, spicy, moral, and either 
laughable or beautiful in sentiment. Not one silly or non- 
sensical piece can be found in the whole book. It is be- 
lieved that here is a volume that more nearly meets the 
wants in this line than any other similar publication. 

B. A. H. 



(3) 



^; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



THE VILLAGE SCHOOL-MASTER. 

Across the road, beyond the hill, 
Close by the stream that turns the mill, 
An old house stands, in which Ferule 
Both taught and thrashed the village schooL 

The house itself is worn and gray, 
The roof, decayed, has fallen away ; 
The door unhinged, the windows gone, 
The school of all its glories shorn. 

Yet stands the tree, from which a bell 
Proclaimed its solemn, tearful knell ; 
For many a boy it called to school, 
To feel the weight of old Ferule. 

I knew it well, for oft my back 
Resounded with its thund'ring whack; 
But I forgive, since 'tis but true 
I ne'er received one half was due. 

I could from mem'ry sketch his face, 
And ev'ry feature quickly trace. 
A gaunt and stalwart man was he, 
As ever taught the ABC. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



Severe he was, and rough in view, 
Tho' kind, and as a woman true; 
His purse ne'er closed to want's appeal, 
His heart "another's woe could feel." 

Ah, yes! methinks I see him now, 
With iron hair and shaggy brow, 
'Neath which there shot, in fitful flashes, 
A glance that turned us pale as ashes. 

\inong the lads 'twas ever said 
He'd see behind, nor turn his head; 
But that 1 cannot verify — 
I thought on me he kept his eye. 

He'd been a soldier in his day; 
Had fought his fight and carved his way ; 
Thus raised a tree that bore him fruit, 
He taught " young ideas how to shoot." 

When school " broke up" — the boys away, 
Lived each through life his destined way; 
Yet long the master kept the field, 
Reluctant his worn soul to yield. 

But time rolled on, death's arrow sped, 
And Ferule slumbered with the dead ; 
Now forty years or more have gone, 
And I, alone, come here to mourn. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



A LITTLE BOY'S TROUBLES. 

I thought when I'd learned my letters 

That all my troubles were done ; 
But I find myself much mistaken — 

They only have just begun. 
Learning to read was awful, 

But nothing like learning to write ; 
I'd be sorry to have you tell it, 

But my copy-book is a sight ! 

The ink gets over my fingers, 

The pen cuts all sorts of shines, 
And won't do at all as I bid it; 

The letters won't stay on the lines, 
But go up and down and all over, 

As though they were dancing a jig — 
They are there in all shapes and sizes, 

Medium, little, and big. 

The tails of the g's are so contrary, 

The handles get on the wrong side 
Of the d's and the k's and the h's, 

Though I've certainly tried and tried 
To make them just right; it is dreadful; 

I really don't know what to do ; 
I'm getting almost distracted — 

My teacher says she is too. 

There' d be some comfort in learning 
If one could get through ; instead 

Of that, there are books awaiting, 
Quite enough to craze my head. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



There's the multiplication table, 
And grammar, and — oh, dear me ! 

There's no good place for stopping, 
When one has begun, I see. 

My teacher says, little by little 

To the mountain top we climb ; 
It isn't all done in a minute, 

But only a step at a time; 
She says that all the scholars, 

All the wise and learned men, 
Had each to begin as I do — 

It' that's. so, where's my pen? 

Charlotte Perry \ in Wide- Awake. 



THE REPORT OF THE HOURS 

Amid the blue and starry sky 

A group of hours one even 
Met, as they took their upward flight 

Into the highest heaven 

Commissioned each to bear above 

Whatever had been done 
By little children, good or bad, 

Since the last rising sun. 

And some had gold and purple wings, 
Some drooped like faded flowers, 

And sadly soared to tell the tale 
That they were misspent hours. 

Some glowed with rosy hopes and smiles, 
And some had many a tear ; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Others had some kind words and acts, 
To carry upward there. 

A shining hour, with golden plumes, 

Was laden with a deed 
Of generous sacrifice a child 

Had done for one in need. 

And one was bearing up a prayer 

A little child had said, 
All full of penitence and love, 

While kneeling by his bed. 

And thus they glided on, and gave 
The records, dark and bright, 

To Him who marks each passing hour 
Of childhood's day and night. 

Oh, let us all remember how 

Each hour is on its way, 
Bearing its own report to heaven 

Of all we do and say. 



Mrs. Gordon. 



HIS RICHES. 

Poor ! did you call me ? 

My wants are but few, 
And the generous Nature 

Gives more than my due : 
The air and the sunshine, 

Fresh water and health, 
And heart to enjoy them — 

All these are my wealth. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK'. 



My wealth is substantial. 

Although in the mart 
I cannot convey it, 

In whole or in part ; 
Yet, if I enjoy it. 

What signifies more ? 
I'm lord of the ocean, 

I'm king of the shore ! 

Wealth could procure me 

But pleasure and ease : 
I've both in my garden, 

beneath the green trees; 
I've both in my cottage, 

My fancies to feed; 
I've both in my conscience- 

What more do 1 need ? 



I'LL BE A MAN. 

I'm but a little fellow now, 

between three feet and four, 
but if 1 keep growing fast. 

I'll soon be three feet more. 

A tippler I will never be, 

No drop my lips will pass, 
I'll sign the true teetotal pledge, 

And keep it to the last. 

With knowledge I must store my mind. 

For though I'm e'er so tall, 
If I am rude and ignorant 

I shall be very small. 

Selected. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



"GIVE US A CALL." 

Give us a call ! We keep good beer, 
Wine, brandy, and whisky here ; 
Oar doors are open to boys and men, 
And even to women now and then. 
We lighten their purses, we taint their breaths, 
We swell up the columns of awful deaths. 
All kinds of crimes we sell for dimes, 
In our sugar' d poisons, so sweet to taste ; 
If you've money, position, or time to waste, 
Give us a call. 

Give us a call ! In a pint of our gin 
We sell more wickedness, shame, and sin 
Than a score of clergymen, preaching all day 
From dawn to darkness, could preach away. 
And in our beer (though it may take longer 
To get a man drunk than drinks that are stronger) 
We sell out poverty, shame, and woe. 
Who wants to purchase ? Our prices are low. 
Give us a call. 

Give us a call ! We'll dull your brains, 
We'll give you headaches and racking pains, 
We'll make you old, while yet you are young, 
To lies and slander we'll train your tongue, 
We'll make you shirk from all useful work, 
Make theft and forgery seem fair play, 
And murder a pastime sure to pay. 
Give us a call. 

Give us a call ! We are cunning and wise ; 
We are bound to succeed, for we advertise 



ACME DECLAMAT/O.X BOOK. 



In the family papers, the journals that claim 
To be pure in morals and fair of fame. 
Husbands, brothers, and sons will read 
Our kind invitations, and some will heed 
And give us a call; we pay for all 
The space in papers we occupy, 
And there's little in life that money won't buy. 
If you would go down in the world, not up, 
If you would be slain by the snake in the cup. 
Or lose your soul in the flowing bowl, 
If you covet shame and a blasted name, 
Give us a call. 

Ella Wheeler. 



"TWO SINNERS." 

There was a man, it was said one time, 

Who went astray in his youthful prime. 

Can the brain keep cool and the heart keep quiet 

When the blood is a river that's running riot ? 

And the boys will be boys, the old folks say, 

And a man's the better who's had his day. 

The sinner reformed, and the preacher told 

Of the prodigal son who came back to the fold ; 

And the Christian people threw open the door 

With a warmer welcome than ever before. 

Wealth and honor were his to command, 

And a spotless woman gave him her hand, 

And the world strewed their pathway with flowers 

a-bloom, 
Crying, "God bless lady and God bless groom ! " 

There was a maiden went astray, 

In the golden dawn of life's young day. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



She had more passion and heart than head, 
And she followed blindly where fond love led, 
And love unchecked is a dangerous guide, 
To wander at will by a fair girl's side. 

The woman repented and turned from her sin, 
But no door opened to let her in ; 
The preacher prayed that she might be forgiven, 
But told her to look for mercy in heaven. 
For this is the law of the earth, we know, 
That the woman is scorned, while the man may go. 
A brave man wedded her, after all, 
But the world said, frowning, "We shall not call." 

Ella Wheeler Wilcox. 



I'VE DOT A MAN TO SIGN THE PLEDGE. 

FOR A LITTLE GIRL. 

I've dot a man to sign the pledge ; 

I know you'll all be glad. 
I saw him fall against the hedge ; 

Oh dear ! he did look bad. 

He seemed to be all rags and mud, 

His hair was like a mat ; 
And on his face I saw some blood ; 

And, oh dear ! what a hat. 

He said, "You're like my little Grace; 

I never thought she'd die." 
Then, with his hands he hid his face, 

And oh ! how he did cry. 

I coaxed him in, and in our book 
His name he said he'd write 



H ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



M 1 would give him just one tiss, 
Aud mother said I might. 

['ve something else you'd like to hear — 

But mind, you must not tell : 
All those who sign the pledge to-night 

Shall have a tiss as well. 

And those who even then won't sign — 

I'm afraid there'll be a few — 
I hope they've tiny tots at home 

// 'ho 11 tiss them till they do. 

Juvenile Temperance Reciter 



\ WOMAN'S QUESTION. 

Do you know that you have asked for the costliest thing 

Ever made by the Hand above — 
A woman's heart and a woman's life, 

And a woman's wonderful love? 

Do you know that you have asked for this priceless thing 

As a child might ask for a toy? 
Demanding what others have died to win. 

With the reckless dash of a boy? 

You have written my lesson of duty out, 

Man-like you have <|iiestioned me — 
Now stand at the bar of my woman's soul, 

Until 1 can question thee. 



I require all things that are grand and true, 
All things that a man should be; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. l$ 



If you give this all, I stake my life 

To be all that you demand of me. 

If you cannot do this, a laundress and cook 

You can hire, with little pay; 
But a woman's heart and a woman's life 

Are not to be won that way. 

Mrs. E. B. Browning. 



A MOTHER'S CARE. 

I do not think that I could bear 
My daily weight of woman's care, 

If it were not for this : 
That Jesus seemeth always near, 
Unseen, but whispering in my ear 
Some tender words of love or cheer. 

To fill my soul with bliss. 

There are so many trivial cares 

That no one knows, and no one shares, 

Too small for me to tell; 
Things e'en my husband cannot see, 
Nor his dear love uplift for me — 
Each hour's unnamed perplexity, 

That mothers know so well. 

The failure of some household scheme, 
The ending of some pleasant dream, 

Deep hidden in my breast; 
The weariness of children's noise, 
The yearning for that subtle poise 
That turneth duties into joys, 

And giveth inner rest. 



16 ACME DECLAMATIOX BOOK. 



These secret things, however small. 
Are known to Jesus, each and all, 

And this thought brings me peace. 
I do not need to say one word ; 
He knows what thought my heart hath stirred; 
And by divine caress my Lord 

Makes all my throbbings cease. 

And then upon his loving breast 
My weary head is laid at rest. 

In speechless ecstacy ! 
Until it seemeth all in vain 
That care, fatigue, or mortal pain 
Should seek to drive me forth again 

From such felicity ! 



THE HAND FOR ME. 

Give me the hand that is warm, kind, and ready : 
Give me the clasp that is calm, true, and steady ; 
Give me the hand that will never deceive me; 
Give me the hand that I aye may believe thee. 

Soft is the palm of the delicate woman ; 

Hard is the hand of the rough, sturdy yeoman ; 

Soft palm or hard hand, it matters not — never ! 

Give me the hand that is friendly forever! 

Give me the hand that is true as a brother; 
Give me the hand that has harmed not another ; 
Give me the hand that lias not forsworn it; 
Give me the grasp that I may adore it. 

Lovely the palm of the fair, blue-veined maiden. 

Horny the hand of the workman o'erladen ; 

Lovely or ugly, it matters not — never! 

Give me the grasp that is friendly forever ! 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 17 



Give me the grasp that is honest and hearty ; 
Free as the breeze, and unshackled by party ; 
Let friendship give the grasps that become her — 
Close as the twine of the vines of the summer. 

Give me the hand that is true as a brother ; 

Give me the hand that has not wronged another ; 

Soft palm or hard hand, it matters not — never ! 

Give me the grasp that is friendly forever ! 

Anon. 



IF I WERE YOU. 

What would I do if I were you ? 

First thing, I'd make a rule 
To put my hat and boots in place 

When I came home from school. 

What would I do if I were you ? 

I wouldn't pout and cry 
Because I couldn't have my way 

About a piece of pie. 

What would I do if I were you? 

I'd speak a pleasant word 
To this and that one in the house, 

And not be sour as curd. 

What would I do if I were you ? 

I'd not fly off apace 
Into a raging passion when 

Another took my place. 

And when a body asked my help, 
I'd try to do a favor, 



IS ACME DECLAMATION HOOK 



So that it should not always have 
A disobliging flavor 



>&■ 



It" I were you, my little friend, 

I'd try to be so good 
That my example all around 

Might follow if they could. 

Then 'twill be easy to obey 

( '.od's law and parents' rule . 
And you'll be happy too, and good 

At home, or play, or school 

The Fountain 



STRIKES. 

1\ these days of strikes sve may as well be thinking of 
striking too. It is a good thing to strike in the right 
direction. Every one should strike at evil to overcome it, 

and then "strike out 3 after something good. 

Strikes are quite proper, only strike right. 
Strike to some purpose, but not for a fight; 
Strike for your manhood, for honor, and fame, 
Strike right and left till you win a good name ; 
Strike for your freedom from all that is vile; 
Strike off companions who often beguile, 
Strike with the hammer, the sledge, and the ax; 
Strike off bad habits with burdensome tax; 
Strike out unaided, depend on no other; 
Strike without gloves, and your foolishness smother ; 
Strike off the fetters of fashion and pride ; 
Strike where 'tis best, but let wisdom decide , 
Strike a good blow while the iron is hot ; 
Strike, keep striking, till you hit the right spot 



A CME DECLA MA TION B O OK. 1 9 



OUR FLAG. 

SELECTIONS FOR THE LOWER GRADES. 

First Pupil — 

Tell me, who can, about our flag, 

With its red and white and blue ; 
How it came to have so many stars, 

And pretty stripes so few. 

Second Pupil — 

The thirteen stripes are for thirteen States, 

That first into Union came ; 
For each new State we have added a star, 
But have kept the stripes the same. 

Third Pupil— 
The number has now reached thirty-eight, 

So here is an example for you : 
Take the " old thirteen " from thirty-eight, 

And how many States are new? 

Fourth Pupil — 

Thirteen from thirty-eight : let's see ; 

Well, three from eight leaves five, 
And one from three leaves two, 

There will be remainder, twenty-five. 

Fifth Pupil— 

And these all reach from east to west, 

On both the ocean shores; 
And over all this proud flag waves, 

And the "Bird of Freedom" soars. 



:o 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



HAIL THE NEW YEAR! 

O New Year ! New Year! so glad and tree. 
What will you bring in your arms for me ? 
Here I stand, waiting to bid you good-speed, 
What will you bring me of all that I need? 

While 1 stand hailing you, fair New Year, 
Change cur good wishes to blessings here; 
Change them for us into roses, I pray, 
Into violets of April and daisies of May. 

Change them for all into harvests of peace, 
[nto hope's fruition and joy's increase; 
Deal with us tenderly, < Town us with cheer, 
Bless us, bless only, gracious New Year! 

Lit ell a Clark. 



BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY. 



In speaking of a person's faults, 

Pray don't forget your own ; 
Remember, those with homes of glass 

Should seldom throw a stone. 
If we have nothing else to do 

Than talk of those who sin, 
'Tis better to commence at home, 

And from that point begin. 

We have no right to judge a man 

Until he's fairly tried; 
Should we not like his company, 

We know the world is wide. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 21 



Some may have faults — and who have not? 

The old as well as young; 
Perhaps we may, for aught we know, 

Have fifty to their one. 

I'll tell you of a better plan, 

And find it works full well — 
To try my own defects to cure 

Ere others' faults I tell; 
And though I sometimes hope to be 

No worse than some I know, 
My own shortcomings bid me let 

The faults of others go. 

Then let us all, Avhen we begin 

To slander friend or foe, 
Think of the harm one word may do 

To those we little know ; 
Remember, curses sometimes, like 

Our chickens, "roost at home"; 
Don't speak of others' faults until 

We have none of our own. 



SHAN'T AND WON'T. 

Shan't and Won't were two little brothers, 

Angry and sullen and gruff; 
Try and Will are dear little sisters — 

One can scarce love them enough. 

Shan't and Won't look down on their noses, 

Their faces are dismal to see ; 
Try and Will are brighter than roses 

In June, and as blithe as the bee. 



/< ME DECLAMA TION HOOK 



Shan't and Won't are backward and stupid. 

Little, indeed, do they know ; 
!'rv and Will learn something new daily. 
And seldom are heedless or slow 

Shan't and Won't love nothing, no. nothing, 
So much as to have their own way; 

Try and Will give up to their elders 
And try to please others at play 

Shan't and Won't have terrible trouble. 

Their story is too sad to tell, 
Try and Will arc now at the school, 

Learning to read and to spell 



Selected. 



VlARiAR IN HLAVLN. 

Tin pa'son's ben preachin' 'bout heaven 

To us who're outen the fold , 
'Bout gates made of jasper and pearl, 

And streets paved with nuggets of gold . 
Says the folks there are saints, or else angeb 

Some play in' on harps with gold strings— 
I allow it's a sort of accomp'ment 

To tunes which the rest of 'em sings 

And 1 wonder and think of Mariar, 

Who left me a year ago May, 
How she tackles to all them fine fixin's- 

For she didn't set much by display. 
She were humble and shy-like alivin ', 

As any with whom I'm acquaint; 
I reckon she don't feel to hum yet. 

When she talks with an angel or saint. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



When she looks at the amethyst fences, 

And walks on the street paved with gold, 
Don't you s'pose there are times when she longs for 

The lane in which me and her strolled ? — 
The old grassy lane through the medder, 

And the stile where my comin' she'd wait — 
Don't you think she'd as lief have the stile there 

As the beautifulest pearly hinged gate ? 

And the pond on the farm by the willers, 

Where she used to pick cat-tails and flowers, 
Ruther have than the big crystal ocean ? — 

'Cause she did love this old farm of ours. 
Set me thinkm' in this way this mornin', 

When I looked at her pansies and roses, 
And I couldn't help wishin' her with me, 

'Stead of stayin' up there long 'ith Moses. 

As for me, it's lonesome 'ithout 'er — 

So solemn-like round the old place, 
That I'm longin' to die and go to her, 

Tho' I reckon I'm lackin' of grace. 
But if I should be sent down to — t'other, 

And could sit down 'ith her by the fire — 
Why ! what could be nicer in heaven 

Than sittin' 'longside of Mariar ? 

'Tain't orthydox, this way of talkin', 

Sez the pa'son to me t'other day ; 
And he fetched me to his way o' thinkin', 

Which was jest like Mariar's old way. 
So I'm tryin' to live jest as she did — 

Go to meetm' as she use ter do — 
And her sperit hangs round me and whispers : 

" Josiah, I guess you'll pull through ! " 

Mather D. Kimball, in Chicago Current. 



24 ACME DECLAMATIOX BOOK. 



I WONDER. 

I wonder if the children know 
How long it takes a seed to grow 
Before ihe ripened fruit appears, 
Fit crowning of the work of years. 

I wonder if each child can tell 
How long on earth our Lord did dwell 
Before his life-work he began, 
Then gave that life to ransom man. 

1 wonder why the children think 

From Learning's fount they're forced to drink. 

And spend the fairest years of life 

In just preparing for its strife. 

A single word shall end my song : 
Who builds a structure broad and strong 
Must first, by patient labor, lay 
A sure foundation all the way. 

E. M. Harriman. 



LITTLE HOUSEKEEPERS. 

FOR SEVERAL LITTLE GIRLS. 

Busy and happy young housewives are we ; 

Not very big specimens — that you can see — 

But we've just the same housework of all kinds to do 

That the big, grown up housekeepers have to go through. 

Since Monday is wash-day all ihe world round, 

At the washtub, on Monday, we're sure to be found. 



A CME DECLA MA TION BOOK. 25 



We rub Dolly's clothes till they're pure as the snow,' 
Then we rinse them, and wring them, and hang them up, 
so. 2 

On Tuesday the ironing has to be done, 

So we sprinkle and fold 3 — that's the part that is fun ! — 

And we smooth out the wrinkles with our irons thus, you 

see, 
Rubbing backward and forward till they're smooth as can 

be. 4 

On Wednesday we bake — and oh ! 'tis such fun 
To knead the soft dough — this is how it is done. 5 
For our cakes we must have just the finest of dust, 
Then our pies — this is how to roll out our crust. 6 

On Thursday there's nothing especial to do, 
So we do odds and ends — darn stockings or sew ; 7 
But on Friday with brooms we make the dust fly, 
As we sweep the house o'er where'er dirt we espy. 8 

And at last, when Saturday comes — oh dear ! dear ! 
We're busy as any grown folks ever were ; 
We clean, and we scrub, and we brew, and we bake, 9 
Then our week's work all done, Sunday rest we can take. 

1. Make the motion of rubbing up and down as on a wash-board in 
washing. 

2. Make the motion of wringing clothes by hand, and then reaching 
up to hang them on the line. 

3. Motion of sprinkling. 

4. Using the right hand, move smoothly left and right— left and right, 
etc. 

5. Move alternately the doubled fists up and down, as in kneading 
dough. 

6. Use both hands, making a smoothing motion. 
7- Motion of sticking a needle in and out. 

8. Holding the hands as though holding a broom, make a sweeping 
motion. * 

9- Count off with the right hand, on the fingers of the left, each item. 



26 . / CME DE CLA MA T10N B O OK. 



THE CONCEITED GRASSHOPPER. 

There was a little grasshopper 

Forever on the jump; 
And as he never looked ahead, 

He often got a bump. 

His mother said to him one day, 
As they were in the stubble, 

" If you don't look before you leap, 
You'll get yourself in trouble." 

The silly little grasshopper 
Despised his wise old mother, 

And said he knew what best to do, 
And bade her not to bother. 

He hurried off across the field — 
An unknown path he took — 

When, oh! he gave a heedless jump, 
And landed in the brook. 

He struggled hard to reach the bank- 
A floating straw he seizes — 

When quick a hungry trout darts out, 
And tears him all to pieces. 



Good little boys and girls, heed well 
Your mother's wise advice; 

Before you move, look carefully, 
Before you speak, think twice. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 27 



A SERMON IN RHYME. 

If you have a friend worth loving, 
Love him. Yes, and let him know 

That you love him, ere life's evening 
Tinge his brow's sunset glow. 

Why should good words ne'er be said 

Of a friend — until he is dead ? 

If you hear a song that thrills you, 

Sung by any child of song, 
Praise it. Do not let the singer 

Wait deserved praise long. 
Why should one who thrills your heart 
Lack the joy you may impart? 

If you hear a prayer that moves you 

By its humble, pleading tone, 
Join it. Do not let the seeker 

Bow before his God alone. 
Why should not your brother share 
The strength of "two or three" in prayer? 

If you see the hot tears falling 

From a loving brother's eyes, 
Share them. And, by sharing, 

Own your kinship with the kiss. 
Why should any one be glad 
When a brother's heart is sad ? 

If a silvery laugh goes rippling 
Through the sunshine on his face, 

Share it. 'Tis the wise man's saying — 
For both joy and grief a place. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



There's health and goodness in the mirth 
In which an honest laugh has birth. 

If your work is made more easy 

By a friendly, helping hand. 
Say so. Speak out brave and truly. 

Ere the darkness veil the land. 
Should a brother workman, dear, 
Falter for a word of cheer ? 

Scatter thus the seeds of kindness, 

All enriching as you go — 
Leave them. Trust the Harvest-giver, 

He will make each seed to grow, 
So, until its happy end, 
Your life shall never lack a friend. 



BE FIRST. 

What your conscience bids you do, 

Hasten to obey it ; 
Evil promptings soon would win, 

If you should delay it. 

If a quarrel should arise. 

Be the first to leave it. 
Be the first to pardon ask, 

Be the first to give it. 

\{ to others evil comes, 

Do your best to stay it ; 
If they need a helpful word, 

Be the first to say it. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 29 



If a toilsome duty calls, 

Put your efforts to it. 
If you see a work to do, 

Be the first to do it. 

If a slander should arise, 

From your lips repel it ; 
But if any good you know, 

Be the first to tell it. 

Conscience holds the prize of peace ; 

Do well, and obtain it. 
Duty gives the crown of joy ; 

Faithful be, and gain it. 

Emma F. Wyman, in Well Spring. 



THE WORLD IS WHAT WE MAKE IT. 

I've seen some people in this life 

Who always are repining, 
Who never, never yet could see 

The storm-cloud's silver lining. 
There always something is amiss, 

From sunrise to its setting ; 
That God's hand made their map of life 

They seem the while forgetting. 

And I have seen a blessed sight 

To sin-beclouded vision, 
Some people who, where'er they be, 

Make earth seem an Elysian. 
They always see the brightest side — 

The direful shadows never — 
And keep the flower of hope in bloom 

Within their hearts forever. 



30 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



The one can make the sunniest day 

Seem wondrous sad and dreary ; 
The other smiles the clouds away, 

And makes a dark day cheery. 
This life of ours is, after all. 

About as we shall make it; 
i( we can banish grief and care, 

Let's haste to undertake it. 



MOTION SONG. 

Children stand, and move hands and arms to imitate flying.) 

Let's play we're little birdies, flying here and there, 
Perched upon a leafy tree, sailing in the air. 

Hark! ev'ry birdie sings, 

Sweet, sweet the music rings. 

Arms akimbo. Move the feet to imitate the trotting of horses.) 

Let's play we'er little ponies, ready for a race. 

Trot ! trot ! each pony tries to win the foremost place. 

Trot, trotting ! O, what fun ! 

Trot, trot ! the race is won. 

(All stoop until the last line, when they start up quickly, each like a 
real "Jack-in-the-box.") 

Let's play we're little boxes, standing in a row, 
Some behind and some before, just this way we go. 

Turn the keys, each unlocks, 

Up pops ''Jack-in-the-box." 

i. Play the fife and beat the drum. 2. Move the feet as if marching. 
3. Move hands as if waving flag. 4. Left hand at the mouth to imitate 
a trumpet. 1 

'Let's play we're little soldiers, see our fifes and drums, 
2 March, march, with 3 banners waving, so our army comes; 

March on, keep step just so, 

4 Toot, toot, the trumpets go. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 31 



(t. Move hands as if building a wall. 2. Imitate sawing. 3. Imitate 
planing. 4 Drive in the nails with the clenched fist. 5. Drive nails 
with tips of the fingers.) 

Let's be little carpenters, 1 up our houses go, 
2 Saw the boards, 3 then plane them well, 4 nail and ham- 
mer so ; 

4 Knock ! knock ! a sturdy blow, 
s Tap, tap ! the hammers go. 

(Swing the hands and move the feet to imitate jumping rope.) 

Let's play we're little children, jumping high and low, 
Now in air, now on the ground, see our jump-ropes go, 

Swing, swinging in the air, 

Swing, swinging free from care. 

(All sit and fold the arms., 

Now our play-time's over, and here we are in school, 
Sit erect and study well, mind the teacher's rule. 

Then when our work is done 

Happy we'll homeward run. 

Lizzie M. Hadley, in Popular Educator. 



BE KIND. 

Little children, bright and fair, 
Blessed with every needful care, 
Always bear this in mind : 
God commands us to be kind ; 
Kind not only to our friends, 
They on whom our care depends 
Kind not only to the poor, 
They who poverty endure ; 
But, in spite of form and feature, 
Kind to every living creature. 
Never pain or anguish bring, 
Even to the smallest thing ; 



32 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



For, remember that the fly, 
Just as much as you or I, 
Is the work of that great hand 
That hath made the sea and land. 
Therefore, children, bear in mind, 
Ever, ever to be kind. 



Selected. 



WIFE AND 1. 

Come and drain a cup of joy, 

Now with me, good wife, 
And bring the girl and boy 

Now with thee, good wife. 
Let all hearts be blithe and gay. 
It is fourteen years to-day 
Since you spake the little "aye" 
That to me was life. 

When in wedding white arrayed 

I beheld you stand, 
Why, I almost felt afraid 

E'en to touch your hand. 
And when with love intent 
Your gaze on me you bent, 
You seemed a being sent 

From the "Better Land." 

And an angel you have proved 
Since that good, glad hour, 

Aye, wherever we have roved, 
In sunshine and in shower. 

In all goodness you transcend, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 33 



And all excellencies blend 
In the mother, wife, and friend, 
As a sacred dower. 

You have made my life more pure 

Than it might have been ; 
You have taught me to endure, 

And to strive and win. 
With your simple song of praise 
You sanctify our days, 
And our thoughts to heaven you raise 

From a world of sin. 

Come, let's quit the dusty town, 

With its noise and strife, 
And seek the breezy down, 

That with health is rife. 
Work is good, and so is play, 
Let us keep our wedding-day 
O'er the hills and far away, 

Happy man and wife. 



KINDNESS. 

A little word in kindness spoken, 

A motion or a tear, 
Has often healed a heart that's broken, 

And made a friend sincere. 

A word — a look — has crushed to 'earth 
Full many a budding -flower, 

Which, had a smile but owned its birth, 
Would bless life's darkest hour. 



34 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Then deem it not an idle thing 

A pleasant word to speak ; 
The face you wear, the thoughts you bring, 

A heart may heal or break. 

Colesworthy, 

TAKING AIM. 

There were four little boys 

Who started to go 
From the very same spot 

To make tracks in the snow. 
Who made his path straightest, 

They laid in their plan, 
Of all the contestants 

Should be the best man. 

Now, this little four 

Were Philip, and John, 
And merry-faced Harry, 

And sober-eyed Don ; 
The best friends in the world, 

And full of invention 
In play, but they seldom 

Were found in contention. 

Well, they started together 

And traveled along, 
But John, Don, and Harry, 

In some way, went wrong; 
But Phil, made his path 

Nearly straight, and they wondered, 
When all tried alike, 

Why they three had blundered. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 35 



Then Philip replied, 

" The reason you see, 
Though no harder I tried 

To succeed than you three : 
I pushed for that oak, 

Going forward quite ready, 
While you straggled on, 

Without aim, and unsteady." 

Now, you see, my dear boys, 

What such lessons teach : 
If there is a point 

That you wish to reach, 
A position in life 

At all worth the naming, 
If you gain it, 'twill greatly 

Depend on your aiming. 

Mark S. Ladd. 



WE LITTLE BOYS. 

If older boys can make a speech, 

We little boys can too; 
And though we do not say so much, 

Yet we've a word for you. 

This world is large and full of room, 

There is a place for all; 
The rich, the poor, the wise, the good, 

The large as well as small. 

So give the little ones a chance 
To show off what they know, 

And shun us not because we're small, 
For little boys will grow. 



36 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



BABES IN THE WOOD. 

The following poetic screed was written by Prof. James 
H. Lansley, of Elizabeth, N. J., and read by him at a Busi- 
ness Educators' Convention : 

The night before last each told of success, 

Of His youth and pursuits and mother's caress. 

Of struggles in childhood, of scrambles for pelf, 

Of labors performed to take care of himself. 

While some were beginners in life and its game, 

Some others, high up on the ladder of fame, 

Stood here in convention, with unsullied name. 

Ah! my friends, a good name is much to be sought; 

With gold or with silver it cannot be bought; 

Tis surely a fortune, obtained at high cost, 

And yet, if uncared for, how easily lost! 

The millennial day will draw very near, 

When we dare to do right without favor or fear. 

But back to my subject — some spoke of their lives, 

And silently thought of their babies and wives. 

While some few were single — I pity the life 

Of a moral young man who hasn't a wife ; 

He's not a whole man — he is only a part, 

And much needs a helpmate to comfort his heart. 

Young man, a suggestion, just let me advise: 

Seek some one p< messing a soul in her eyes, 

And a heart that will beat for no one but you, 

And to whom your best manhood shall ever be true. 

Can you win her? My friend, you need never fear 

If you have any brains, and will persevere ; 

But you who are married, just tarry awhile, 

And practice that dulcet Spencerian smile; 

The same used by Robert, w r hose sorrows we've seen 

Have made him so sad and exceedingly lean. 

But again I digress — I'll now to my task — 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK* 37 



And just for a moment attention I'll ask. 

Now the officers all, and committees too, 

Like nailers, have worked to a man, good and true ; 

We render our gratitude, every one, 

To the managers all, for the good they have done. 

If, then, we are friendly, why nothing is lost, 

We are fully repaid for the time and the cost. 

Let each of his neighbor in charity speak ; 

A rusty old gate hinge, if oiled, will not squeak ; 

If McAdam's supply dog you draw by the tail, 

To smooth out your pathway, you'll certainly fail; 

There's a well filled with envy and churlish disgrace, 

No man who is perfect will seek such a place; 

Bur mark well, my comrades, this rule I may tell, 

All those ''kick the bucket" who fall in the well; 

For those beautiful halls, light, cheery, and airy, 

Sufficiently fine to bulldoze a fairy, 

For this, friend Packard, we owe you to-day 

Much more than a bushel of thank -you's can pay. 

Then the Twilight Club supper, that bright Thursday night, 

To which every member received an "invite"; 

That Alumni dinner, the boat-ride and fun ; 

The whole entertainment so handsomely done. 

Then yesterday eve with its Riverside ride, 

While the natives all stood with their mouths open wide ; 

I'll venture to say, sir, that all of our clan 

Approve your exceedingly generous plan 

Of seeking the comfort of woman and man. 

And you, Mrs. Packard, God bless you, say I, 

And all this Convention will echo the cry; 

May the bloom on your cheeks grow brighter by years, 

With absence of sorrows, of trials, of tears, 

While the dreams of your girlhood be yours of a truth, 

Your home be an Eden of spring-time and youth, 

And the end of my wishing, so well understood, 

Be joys in your household, not "Babes in the Wood." 



38 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



RED, WHITE, AND BLUE. 

[For three girls dressed in the colore, or wearing- sashts or hows and 
holding appropriate flowers J 

First Girl— 

I am the red, bright red, you see, 

And think I the prettiest color must be. 

I blush in the faces of sweet boys and girls , 

I tinge the red bird's wing as he twirls 

About in the grasses; the robin, dark dressed. 

Would look much too sober without a red breast. 

I color the tulips, and peonies gay ; 

The heavens and hill-tops, at coming of day. 

When the bright sun goes down in the sky, 

I sail on the clouds that go floating by. 

Now, do you think, children, that he who denies 

That I am most beautiful, is very wise ? 

Second Girl— 

My sister, dear, don't be so proud ; 

1 sail like you on the fleecy cloud. 

Just think of my May flowers that cover the hill, 

My roses, my orange blossoms that fill 

The South with their fragrance; on every blue lake 

My hundreds of lilies ! How my daisies would shake 

Their heads at your nonsense ! I know they would say 

That I am the prettier, tho' you're so gay. 

Third Girl — 

That you are both pretty I don't doubt is true, 
But you're nothing compared to the beautiful blue. 
I color the water, I color the skies ; 
Just see how I've painted the merry eyes 
Of these boys and girls ; and violets sweet 
I paint by the thousand down at the feet, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 39 



Boy, holding flag — 

Now, listen to me, Red, White, and Blue, 
I have a few words I would say to you : 
You see this flag ? Wise men and great 
Arranged you here, and if you'll wait, 
And stop all your quarreling, we'll let you see 
Why, of all colors, they chose you three. 
The red was a symbol of courage in war ; 
They chose the white for its purity rare; 
For union and justice they chose the blue; 
I guess you're all rather pretty, don't you ? 

Miss Annie Chase, 



THE LIGHT THAT IS FELT. 

A tender child of summers three, 

Seeking her little bed at night, 
Paused on the dark stair timidly — 
"Oh, mother, take my hand," said she, 

"And then the dark will all be light." 

We older children grope our way 

Prom dark behind to dark before; 
And only when our hands we lay, 
Dear Lord, in Thine, the night is day, 
And there is darkness nevermore. 

Reach downward to the sunless days 
Wherein our guides are blind as we, 

And faith is small and hope delays ; 

Take Thou the hands of prayer we raise, 
And let us feel the light of Thee. 

John G. WhttHer. 



4 o ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



LEGEND OF THE NORTHLAND. 

A.WAY, away in the Northland. 

Where the hours of the day are few, 
And the nights so long in winter 

They cannot sleep them through; 

Where they harness the speedy reindeer 
To the sledges when it snows; 

And the children look like bear's cubs, 
In their funny, furry clothes; 

They tell a curious story — 

I don't believe 'tis true; 
And yet you may learn a lesson, 

[f I tell the tale to you. 

Once, when the good St. Peter 

Lived in this world below, 
And walked about it preaching — 

Just as he did, you know — 

He came to the door of a cottage, 
In traveling round the earth, 

Where a little woman was making cakes, 
And baking them on the hearth ; 

And being faint with fasting, 
For the day was almost done, 

He asked her, from her store of cakes, 
To give him a single one. 

So she made him a very little cake, 
But, as it baking lay, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 41 



She looked at it, and thought it seemed 
Too large to give away. 

Therefore she kneaded another, 

And still a smaller one ; 
But it looked, when she turned it over, 

As large as the first had done. 

Then she took a tiny scrap of dough, 

And rolled and rolled it flat, 
And baked it as thin as a wafer ; 

But she would not part with that • 

For she said, " My cakes that seem too small, 

When I eat of them myself, 
Are yet too large to give away," 

So she put them on the shelf. 

Then good St. Peter angry grew, 

For he was hungry and faint ; 
And surely such a woman 

Was enough to provoke a saint. 

And he said, ' ' You are far too selfish 

To dwell in a human form ; 
To have both food and shelter, 

And a fire to keep you warm. 

' ' Now, you shall live as the birds do, 

And shall get your scanty food 
By boring, and boring, and boring, 

All day in the hard dry wood." 

Then she went up through the chimney, 
Never speaking a word, 



42 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And out of the top flew a woodpecker, 
For she was changed to a bird. 

She had a scarlet cap on her head. 

And that was left the same ; 
But all the rest of her clothes were burned 

Black as a coal in the flame. 

And every country school-boy 

Has seen her in the wood; 
Where she lives in the trees to this very day, 

Boring and boring for food. 

And this is the lesson she teaches : 

Live not for yourself alone, 
Lest the needs you will not pity 

Shall one day be your own. 

Give plenty of what is given you, 

Listen to pity's call ; 
1 >on*t think the little you give is great, 

And the much you get is small. 

Now, my little boy, remember that, 

And try to be kind and good, 
When you see the woodpecker's sooty dress, 

And see her scarlet hood. 

You mayn't be changed to a bird, though you 
live 

As selfish as you can : 
But you will be changed to a smaller thing : 

A mean and selfish man. 



A CME DECLA MA TION B O OK. 43 



LITTLE GIRL'S SPEECH. 

For older ones to speak a piece 

Must be an easy task ; 
And of a little girl like me 

'Tis not too much to ask. 

I have to read, and write, and spell, 

And say my tables too ; 
And now you hear my little piece, 

The best that I can do. 

But when I am a woman grown, 

If you'll come back some day, 
I'll speak for you a longer piece 

Before I run away; 
For then, you know, I'll want to talk, 

But now I want to play. 

M. R. D. Dingwall 



THE BACHELOR'S LAMENT. 

I wonder now what I have done ! 

Oh dear, what can it be ? 
So many, many pretty girls, 

And not a one for me. 

I hear they're at the ocean side ; 

I follow to the sea; 
I see a thousand pretty girls, 

But never one for me. 

I've wandered up and down the earth 
Until I am thirty-three, 



44 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Still looking for the pretty girl 
That ought to be for me. 

Oh, did she perish in her youth, 

Or die in infancy ? 
( )r has some other fellow got 

The girl that was for me ? 

( )h, immortal gods, thus giving 

Mortal souls their breath, 
Life without love is not living, 

'Tis but living death. 

Then, oh soul beloved, hear me, 

I have waited long ! 
Turn thou till I feel thee near me, 

Hearken to my song. 

Take my lips, my lords, for kisses, 

Feel me thine at last ; 
I have no fair one on earth to bless me, 

And life is nearly past. 

Oh, immortal gods, thus giving 

Mortal souls their breath, 
Life without love is not living, 

'Tis but living death. 



THE BETTER WAY. 

As tender mothers sometimes check 
The glad exuberance of youth, 

To paint upon the trusting heart, 

With somber hue, some needed truth, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



45 



That in the coming days may stand 

Before them, pointing out a way 
To shun the dangers of the land 

Through which their onward feet must stray, 
So God, the Father, sometimes brings, 

Into the sunshine of a life, 
An unexpected grief that stings, 

Which we resist with tearful strife. 
Then on the anvil of His love 

Is placed the helpless, quivering heart, 
And with a wise and tender stroke 

He gives His child the needed smart. 
'Tis well, if trusting we can say, 

Not ours, but Thine, the better way. 



THE TWO WORKERS. 

Two workers in one field 

Toiled on from day to day ; 
Both had the same hard labor, 

Both had the same small pay. 
With the same blue sky above, 

And the same green earth below, 
One soul was full of love, 

The other full of woe. 

One leaped up with the light, 

With the soaring of the lark ; 
One felt his woe each night, 

For his soul was ever dark. 
One heart was hard as stone, 

One heart was ever gay ; 
One toiled with many a groan, 

One whistled all the day. 



4<> ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



One had a flower-clad cot 
Beside a merry mill ; 

Wife and children near the spot 
Made it sweeter, fairer still. 

One a wretched hovel had, 
Full of discord, dirt and dm ; 

No wonder he seemed mad — 
Wife and children starved within 

Still the)' worked in the same field, 

Toiling on from day to day ; 
Both had the same hard labor, 

Both had the same small pay. 
But they worked not with one will, 

The reason let me tell : 
Lo! one drank at the still, 

And the other at the well. 



SPEECH FOR A SIX-YEAR-OLD. 

When Joe, and Kate, and Dick, and Belle, 

Started to school last fall. 
I cried to go, and papa said 

He thought J was too small. 

I begged so hard, at last he said, 

• ' Well, you can go to-day ; 
For after this, I'm very sure, 

At home you'll want to stay." 

But I'm not tired yet, and you 

Can judge now by my looks, 
That though I am but six years old, 

1 like my school and books. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 47 



WANTED. 

Boys of spirit, boys of will, 

Boys of muscle, brain and power 

Boys to work with all their skill — 
These are wanted every hour. 

Not the weak and ignorant, 
That all troubles magnify ; 

Not the idler's cry : "I can't ! " 
But the nobler one : " I'll try ! " 

Though your duty may be hard, 

Look not on it as an ill ; 
If it be an honest task, 

Do it with an honest will. 



VOICES. 

The flowers as they bloom in the spring-time, 
The birds as they sing in the wood, 

All say to us, ' ' Children, remember, 
Our Father who made us is good." 

The sea, and the glorious mountains, 
The stars that illumine the skies, 

Repeat, as we gaze on their beauty, 
" Our Father who made us is wise." 

The lambs, as they sport by their mothers, 
The insects we everywhere find, 

Unite in affectionate chorus, 

" Our father who made us is kind." 



48 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



THE HUMAN BODY. 

From the top of my head 

To my tiny toes, 
I am built of bones, 

As every one knows 

These are the frame work 

So strong within, 
Outside they are covered 

With flesh and skin. 

The parts of my body 

Are only three, 
My head, my trunk, and my limbs. 

As you see. 

My head has a back, 

Two sides and a crown 
All covered with, hair, 

Yellow, red, black or brown. 

And just in front, 

In the foremost place, 
You can plainly see 

My sweet little face. 

My face has a forehead, 

Mouth, nose, and chin, 
Two cheeks where the dimples 

Slip out and in. 

Two eyes to see you 
When you are near, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 49 



Two ears, like sea-shells, 
To help me hear. 

My neck and my shoulders, 

Broad and strong, 
Arm, fore-arm, wrist, hand, 

With fingers so long. 

My trunk, my thighs, 
Legs, ankles, and knees ; 

On two feet I stand, 
And run if I please. 

My joints are to bend 

When I run, jump, or walk. 
I've a. little red tongue, 

To help me to talk. 

These make up my body, 

And now I will tell 
What we all ought to do, 

To keep strong and well. 

To be neat and clean 
We must take great care, 

Have plenty of sunshine 
And breathe fresh air. 

Eat nourishing food 

To make good blood, and then 
We shall become 

Strong women and men. 



5o ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



WHAT TO DRINK. 

I i hink that every mother's son, 

And every father's daughter. 
Should drink, at least, till twenty-one, 

Just nothing but cold water, 
And after that they might drink tea, 

But nothing any stronger. 
If all folks would agree with me. 

They'd live a great deal longer. 



THE VOICE OF ALL. 

You will see me at the poll; 
Never doubt 1 shall be there: 
By the starry flag I swear! 
There, and vote with all my soul. 
'Tis my right, my glory too, 
'Tis a debt to manhood due, 
'Tis a duty grave and great, 
( )\ved to Heaven, Home and State. 

I shall ne'er forget nor fail; 

I shall go through storm or sun, 

For my ticket tallies one! 

One may turn the balanced scale ; 

One may choose my candidate ; 

One may change the Nation's fate; 

One! but one whose magic might 

Throttles Wrong and rescues Right. 

I shall vote with brain and heart, 
With a thrill of sacred awe ; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 51 



Reason, Liberty and Law 
Charge me do my patriot part ; 
Bid my conscience make its choice . 
Bid me give conviction voice; 
As a citizen, a man, 
Self-ruled, free, American. 

Precious, blood-bought ballot box! 
Keep it pure from every stain ; 
Guard it e'en till thou be slain, 
For 'tis holy. Dei Vox. 
Voice, of God through it is heard , 
When it speaks the people's word, 
Let it tell the will ot all; 
Guard it, though the heavens fall. 

W. H. Venable. 



TRUTH. 

Truth is like a flowing river, 
Flowung on, and flowing ever : 
Ever spreading, ever rising, 
With its waves the heart baptizing 
Ever soothing, ever healing, 
Banishing each troubled feeling ; 
Entering in the willing soul, 
Making the broken-hearted whole. 
Stay thee not the flowing tide, 
Turn thou not its waves aside ; 
Let it flow, and let it enter 
To thy bosoms utmost center; 
Let it warm the heart of clay, 
Let it cleanse all dirt away, 
Till the soul, redeemed from sin. 
To God and heaven shall enter in. 



52 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



THOUGHTS AFTER SCHOOL. 

FOR A TEACHER. 

In the slowly gathering twilight 

I am sitting all alone, 
Thinking of the happy faces 

Of my pupils homeward gone. 
With what eager feet they bounded 

Down the road and o'er the hill ! 
I can hear their merry voices 

Ringing out like music still. 

Through the years I backward wander 

To the old familiar spot, 
Where a careless child I lingered, 

Studying lessons that were fraught 
With a power, in life's hereafter, 

To bring back my straying feet 
To the narrow path of duty, 

Ere my ruin was complete. 

I can see the dear old school-house 

With its stained and crumbling walls, 
And the play-ground stretching downward 

To the brooklet's tiny falls. 
In the doorway stands the teacher, 

Smiling at our childish glee, 
As we form a magic circle 

'Neath the shady old oak tree. 

Where is now that loving teacher, 
Who was always firm yet kind; 

By his earnest, faithful labor, 
Training heart as well as mind ? 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 53 



In the church-yard he is sleeping, 
Safe at rest from toil and pain, 

While the actions of his pupils 
Tell his life was not in vain. 

Where, too, are the merry school-mates; 

With whom in life's morning hours 
I have sported, idly dreaming 

Of the joys yet to be ours? 
Oh ! since then the cup of anguish 

To our lips has oft been pressed, 
While the hopes we fondly cherished 

Never yet our lives have blessed. 

Some have left time's fleeting shadows, 

Crossed the chill and unknown tide ; 
Entered through the gateway golden, 

Joined the company glorified ; 
Others yet below are toiling, 

Some for truth and some for gain ; 
Some are making life a blessing, 

Some are spending it in vain. 

Is it thus these happy children, 

Who are now so free from care, 
Shall awake to sterner duties — 

Shall be called upon to bear 
Their due portion of the sorrow 

That the primal curse has brought, 
Making life a toilsome journey, 

Where the weary ones rest not ? 

Yes ; we grow alone through trial ; 

He is far from madhood's years 
Who has never felt his weakness, 

Never known the power of tears. 



54 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



They who came through tribulation 
Are the ones around the throne ; 

Heaven contains no crown of glory 
For the soul to grief unknown. 

Father, grant that these my pupils 

May be strong to bear their cross, 
Triumphing by patient effort 

( )ver earthly grief and loss. 
Help me teach them life's great lesson. 

Not to live for self alone, 
But by sharing other's burdens 

Thus to make more light their own. 

Give them courage for the conflict ; 

Shield them from the tempter's power 
Let thy sure abiding presence 

Cheer them in each gloomy hour ; 
Lead them in the narrow pathway 

By the blessed sunbeams kissed ; 
Take them all safe home to heaven 

When the school of life's dismissed. 



"VACATION DAYS ARE NEAR." 

FOR CLOSE OF TERM OR YEAR. 

Ho, ho, vacation days are here, 
We welcome them with right good cheer 
In wisdom halls we love to be, 
But yet 'tis pleasant to be free, 
Ho, ho, vacation days are here. 

Ho, ho, the hill, the wood, the dale, 
The lake on which we love to sail ; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 55 



We greet them all with right good cheer, 

In thought unchanged again we're here, 

Ho, ho, the hill, the wood, the dale. 

Ho, ho, ye songsters of the shade, 
A merry troop your haunts invade. 
Beware ! our songs of merry glee 
Shall fright ye from the greenwood tree. 
Ho, ho, ye songters of the shade, 

Ho, ho, the hours will quickly fly, 
And soon vacation time be by; 
Ah ! then we'll all in glad refrain 
Sing welcome to our school again. 
Ho, ho, the hours will quickly fly. 



RHYME OF OUR RULERS. 

The names of the Presidents at the beginning of the verses may be 
omitted. 

George Washington, 1789-97. 

The first of all is Washington, 

The first in war and peace ; 
And first within the Nation's love, 
All other heroes high above, 

Till tide and time shall cease. 

John Adams, 1 797-1801. 

And then the Elder Adams through 

Four years of fierce debate, 
'Twixt those who urged the Frenchmen's cause, 
And those who passed the Alien Laws, 

Was Chiefest Magistrate. 



56 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Thomas Jefferson , 1 8 o i - 9 . 

The third was Thomas Jefferson, 

Who wrote the Declaration ; 
At first the House appointed him, 
Then all the land anointed him 

The ruler of the Nation. 

James Madison, 1 809-1 7. 

And then we had James Madison, 

With England's Second War, 
Who, when his first term ended, 
Ere white-winged Peace descended, 
Was called to rule once more. 

James Monroe, 1817-25. 

Then eight years of prosperity 
And peace with James Monroe; 

And an "Era of Good Feeling," 

And of honest party dealing, 
Such as Nations seldom know. 

John Quincy Adams, 1825-29. 

Then came John Quincy Adams, called 

"The Old Man Eloquent." 
Though second in the people's choice, 
He still was, by the House's voice, 

Proclaimed our President. 

Andrew Jackson , 1829-37. 

But now comes " Hickory Jackson," 

With his " System of Rotation." 
A patriot both true and stanch, 
He crushed secession root and branch, 
And made us more a Nation. 



A CME DE CLA MA T/OJV B O OK. 57 



Martin Van Buren, 1837-41. 

And then we had Van Buren with 
" The Great Financial Crash ;" 

When the business of the Nation, 

Built on wildest speculation, 
Went to universal smash 

William Henry Harrison and John Tyler, 1841 45 

Then William Henry Harrison 

The Office Seekers kill ; 
And Tyler, who succeeds to power, 
With troubles thickening hour by hour, 

Gains e'en the Whigs' ill will. 

James K. Polk, 1845-49. 

And then a War with Mexico, 

"To aid the Southern Cause." 
Our soldiers every battle won, 
While James K. Polk at Washington 
Administered the Laws. 

Zachary Taylor and Millard Fillmore, 1849-53. 

Then "Rough and Ready" Taylor, 

And Fillmore rule the land, 
While on the gathering storm-cloud's face 
It needs no Daniel's skill to trace 
The warning of the hand. 

Franklin Pierce, 1853-57. 

That pent-up storm of slavery 

Broke terrible and fierce, 
When the guidance of our Ship of State, 
Now plunging at a dreadful rate, 

Was given to Franklin Pierce. 



58 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



fames Buchanan, 1857-61. 

But the tempest not abating. 

Buchanan came on deck, 
While still more dark the heavens lower — 
The old man's arm lacked strength and power 

The Ships wild course to check 

Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson, 1861-69. 

The storm became a hurricane 

When Lincoln took command. 
Then half the sailors mutinied, 
At which the bond-men all were freed, 
To bring the Ship to land. 

The second watch had just begun, 

The mutiny was quelled ; 
When the Great Chief is foully slain, 
And Johnson catches up again 

The standard which he'd held. 

Ulysses S. Grant, 1869-77. 

But the crew become dissatisfied, 

And ere they reach the land, 
The great and brave Ulysses Grant, 
With nerve and will of adamant, 

Is given full command. 

Rutherford B. Hayes, 1877-81. 

Now when eight years were ended, 

There was strife for many days, 
Till the "• Eight by Seven Commission " 
Came at last to the decision 

That command belonged to Haves. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 59 



James A. Garfield and Chester A. Arthur, 1881—85. 

And now beloved Garfield 

By a fiend is stricken down, 
While horror fills all Christian breasts, 
And Arthur feels ' ' Uneasy rests 
The head that wears a crown." 

Grover Cleveland, 1885- 

And last 'tis given to Cleveland 
To guide our Ship of State; 

Sail on, oh Ship, forever ! 

May storms o'erwhelm thee never, 
Oh Union, strong and great! 



TAKE A DRINK. 

Take a drink ? No ! not J : 
Reason's taught me better 

Than to bind my very soul 
With a galling fetter. 

Water, sweet and cool and free, 

Has no cruel chains for me. 

Take a drink ? No ! not I ; 

I have seen too many, 
Taking drinks like that of yours, 

Stripped of every penny. 



6o ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



Water, sweet and cool and clear. 
Costs me nothing all the year. 

'Take a drink? No! never; 

By God's blessing, never 
Will I touch or taste or smell 

Henceforth and forever. 
W r ater, sweet and clear and cool, 
Makes no man a slave or fool. 



AMBITIOUS. 

W t e are busy little bees, 

We are workers one and all ; 

We try our teacher dear to please, 
We're bright although we're small. 

We must come to school each day, 

If we would wiser grow ; 
In the pleasant month of May, 

And through the winter's snow. 

Day by day and year by year 
We'll climb the ladder high ; 

We'll never fail, we need not fear, 
With the motto "We will try." 

The great wide world before us lies, 
There's work for us to do; 

If we would win the victor's prize, 
We must be brave and true. 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. 61 



GRANDMA. 

Before my mind there comes to-night 
My dear old Grandma's face ; 

I see her sitting by the fire, 
In her old accustomed place. 

I see those dark and lovely eyes 

Look full into my own; 
I see her smile, and hear her voice 

In soft and tender tone. 

She lays her aged hand in mine, 
And speaks of days gone by ; 

She tells me of her many friends, 
While tear-drops dim each eye. 

She speaks in tender, loving tones 
Of those whom we call dead ; 

Recounts their many acts of love 
And kindly words they said. 

She tells me of the living ones 
Who're scattered far and wide, 

And grieves because they cannot meet 
Around the home fireside. 

She tells me of her dear old home 
Ere Death had entered there; 

Of youthful days, when hope was strong. 
And life seemed bright and fair. 

She speaks of many sorrows borne, 
Of trials hard to bear : 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Of failing health, and bended form, 
Of years of pain and care. 

And now, in half impatient tones, 
She says, " she wonders why, 

When folks have past their usefulness, 
They're not allowed to die." 

No one has passed life's usefulness 
While love beams from the eye ; 

While pleasant smiles and cheering words 
Bring Heaven to earth so nigh. 

There's nothing else in all the world 

Can thrill my being so, 
As happy smiles and love-lit eyes, 

And tones so soft and low. 

As I, in fancy, gaze upon 
My dear old Grandma's face, 

I think : ' ' W T ho else in all the world 
Could really fill her place." 

More than four-score weary years 
Have weighed her down with care ; 

Have made her steps so slow and weak, 
And bleached her lovely hair. 

I know full well that soon they'll say, 
''Your Grandma's laid to rest." 

The tired hands will folded lie 
On a cold and pulseless breast. 

But Grandma ne'er can die (to me), 
For memory's magic power 



A CME DECLA MA TION B O OK. 63 



Will e'er surround me with her love, 
Like fragrance from a flower. 

In childhood's hour she tended me; 

In sickness bathed my brow ; 
With mild reproof she taught me right : 

Can I forget her now ? 

Can I forget those handsome eyes, 
So filled with love's own light; 

Or the gentle voice and loving words, 
Which makes my childhood bright ? 

Earth may claim the feeble form, 

But Grandma's lovely face 
In the sacred halls of memory 

Shall have an honored place. 



"I LOVE THEE, LIFE." 

I love thee, love thee, life ! 
I fain would dwell with thee thy much-loved guest. 
Oh, fold me nearer to thy pulsing breast, 
That I may feel thy heart-beats throb in mine, 
So holding it in unison with thine. 

I love thee, love thee, life ! 
Oh, hold me closer in thy strong embrace; 
Uplift me, bear me onward in thy race, 
Impart to me thy soul's exulting power 
To be mine heritage, mine earthly dower. 

I love thee, love thee, life ! 
I fain would wear thy brightness in my face. 
Oh, give to me thine animating grace; 



64 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Inspire me, thrill me, love me in return; 
It is thy noblest gifts for which I yearn. 

I love thee, love thee, life! 
Bear not so swiftly toward my journey's end ; 
For oh, I dread to part with thee, my friend! 
Surround me with thy warm, entrancing breath, 
And leave me not too soon alone with death. 



OUR FLAG. 

I came not here to seek for fame, 
Nor add a title to my name; 
I came not here to idly boast 
About a king or of his host. 

I came not here a tale to tell, 
About the mountain or the dell; 
One little word I'd speak to thee 
About the flag of liberty. 

The flag of red, of white and blue, 
Borne by loyal hearts and true • 
Our country's breast-plate, nation's shield, 
O'er peaceful homes, on battle field. 

Our fathers bore it, not for fame, 

But for the victory that came ; 

They vowed the flag should ever wave, 

Though battle field should be their grave. 

And thus it stood, through bloody strife, 
An emblem of a nation's life; 
And thus it stood, still tried and true, 
Our flag of red, of white and blue. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 65 



And still it waves for evermore, 
On sea and land, from shore to shore; 
A nation's pride, a nation blessed 
With comfort, peace and happiness. 

Our noble flag, oh ! may it wave 
O'er widow's home and soldier's grave ; 
Oh ! may it deck the soldier's bier, 
Who gave his life, nor flinched at fear. 

And may our nation ever free, 
Stand firm for right and liberty ; 
Nor bow beneath the conqueror's rod, 
Protected by a righteous God. 



THAT VICIOUS OLD BUCKET. 

How fresh in my mind are the scenes of my childhood, 

As fond recollections present them to view — 
The cow-stall, the pig-pen, the ten cords of firewood, 

All the tough chores that I had to go through; 
The weeds in the garden, the stones in the stubble, 

The errands to run and the white beans to shell; 
And (when I'd already a surplus of trouble) 

The bucket that viciously dropped in the well — 
The rotten-roped bucket, the iron-bound bucket, 

The confounded bucket that dropped in the well. 

After trudging all day in the wake of a harrow, 
The team I must water ere getting my grub; 

Cross, footsore and tired clear into the marrow, 
I'd seize on the windlass to fill up the tub. 

So downward that bucket demurely meandered, 

And then with hard lugging it "rose" from the well." 



66 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



But ere I could dump it the rope had disbanded, 
And spang to the bottom the tarnal thing fell ! 

The fiendish old bucket, the rotten-roped bucket, 
The hundred-ton bucket, that dropped in the well. 

Then with grapples and "creepers" and like botherations. 

I bent over the well like a capital A, 
And mingling my tears with devout invocations 

I sprinkled them down as I angled away. 
How it caught — and slipped off — and at last caught securely 

I pulled with a joy that my words cannot tell ; 
And I hugged, not from love, but to hold it more surely, 

The mud-covered bucket that rose from the well — 
The slippery old bucket, the rotten-roped bucket, 

The mud-covered bucket that rose from the well. 



MINNIE'S CALCULATIONS. 

Said Minnie, with pride, 

As she counted her chicks, 
" When they've grown a bit bigger 

I'll sell all the six ; 
And as each ought to fetch 

At least half a crown, 
I can quite well afford me 

A new Sunday gown." 

Alas ! for our castles ! 

How soon they all slide ! 
The cat ate one chicken, 

And another one died; 
And, while mourning their brother 

And sister, the four 
Were crushed by the errand boy 

Slamming the door. 



A CME DEC LAMA TION B O OK. 67 



"Don't reckon your chickens 

Before they are hatched," 
Is a proverb some fancy 

Can never be matched ; 
But I think that this other 

Deserves to be told — 
" Don't count on their value 

Until they are sold." 



HUSBAND AND WIFE. 

She came to the room where her husband 

Seemed taking a peaceful rest, 
With his old hands clasped together 

In slumber on his breast ; 
And she knelt down by the bedside, 

And laid her poor old head 
Close down by his, on the pillow, 

And whispered to the dead : 

" It's only a little while, Daniel, 

Since you died, but, dear, to me, 
It seems like years since you told me 

It had grown too dark to see, 
And asked me to come and kiss you, 

And hold you by the hand, 
As you started out on your journey 

To find a better land. 

" Have you found it ? Tell me, Daniel; 

Speak to your poor old wife. 
Why should we two be parted 

In the last days of our life ? 



68 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Oh ! if they'd take me, too, dear, 

I want to lay by your side, 
For there's nothing left to live for, 

Since my good old man has died. 

"You do not answer me, Daniel; 

It can't be that you know 
That your old wife's talking to you, 

Dying has changed you so. 
There seems such a distance between us ; 

Oh, Daniel, it breaks my heart 
To think you have left me behind you, 

And we are so far apart. 

" I've brought the old Bible, Daniel, 

You gave me when we were wed ; 
Never a day since our marriage 

But there's be£n a chapter read. 
In times of peace and gladness, 

And times of tears and pain, 
We've read it together, Daniel, 

As we never will read it again. 

"You've no need of it now, dear heart, 

But where else shall I find 
The comfort and strength that's needed 

By the old heart left behind ? 
Do you remember, Daniel, 

When our first little baby died, 
How you read it after the fun'ral, 

As I sat at your feet and cried ? 

"I remember the chapter, Daniel, 
It was where the Saviour said, 

' Blessed are they who sorrow, 
For they shall be comforted.' 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Oh, my arms and my heart seemed empty, 

I missed the baby so ; 
Have you found the little one, Daniel ? 

Tell me ; I want to know. 

"Oh, go to the dear Lord, Daniel, 

And ask Him to let me come ; 
Tell Him your old wife's lonely, 

And longs to follow you home. 
I want to be with you, Daniel ; 

I want to hold fast to your hand ; 
Tell the dear Lord about it, 

And He will understand." 

Eben E. Rexford. 



MOTHER GOOSE CORRECTED. 

FOR TWO BOYS AND FOUR GIRLS. 

All— 

We would like to ask a favor 

Of the kind friends here to-day, 
So please listen with attention 

To what we have to say. 
Mother Goose has told some stories — 

Everybody knows them too — 
But we stand up here to tell you 

That not one of them is true. 

First Girl — 

My mother and I, we live in a shoe, 
And though there are many besides we two 
There's plenty of room, as any could see; 
And we are as happy as happy can be, 
With never a cause, as Mother Goose said. 
To whip them soundly and send them to bed. 



7o ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



Second Girl — 

She called me Old Mother Hubbard, 

But you see I am not old; 
She called bare my mother's cupboard 

When 'twas full as it could hold. 
What a big story about my dog ! 

Though he's very fond of tripe, 
He never stood upon his head, 

Nor ever smoked a pipe. 

Third Girl — 
I am little Miss Muffet, 
And I sat upon a tuffet, 
But when the spider alighted 
I was so much delighted 
That I did not run away, 
But fed him upon curd and whey. 

FourtJi Girl — 

The story you have heard of me 

Is, that I lost my sheep, 
And that I could not find them — 

For I am Little Bo-peep. 
But please do not believe it ; 

Indeed, it is not true, 
For I tend them carefully, 

And know just what they do. 

First Boy — 

Many times you've heard of me, 

For I am Little Boy Blue, 
But the story that is told 

Is not exactly true. 
The sheep weren't in the meadow, 

But the cow was in the corn, 
And I had gone to drive her out, 

When I should have been blowing my horn. 



A CME DEC LAMA TION B O OK. 7 1 



Second Boy — 

I have been slandered worst of all, 

For when I went to the fair, 
I had a penny in my pocket, 

And paid the piemen square. 
I went a fishing one rainy day, 

But not to catch a whale, 
The water, it was in the brook, 

My fish were in my pail. 

All— 

The favor we would ask of you, 

Kind friends, who are here to-day, 
Is, whoever you may meet, 

You will tell them what we say. 
We wish the error corrected 

If we can, without any fuss, 
For we hate to have people think 

Such dreadful things of us. 



GOLDEN KEYS. 

A bunch of golden keys is mine 

To make each day with gladness shine. 

" Good morning ! " that's the golden key 
That unlocks every door for me. 

When evening comes, "Good night!" I say, 
And close the door of each glad day. 

When at the table, ' ' If you please " 
I take from off my bunch of keys. 



72 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



When friends give anything to me, 
I'll use the little "Thank you" key. 

" Excuse me," "Beg your pardon," too, 
When by mistake some harm I do. 

Or if unkindly harm I've given, 

With " Forgive me" key I'll be forgiven. 

On a golden ring these keys I'll bind, 
This is its motto: "Be ye kind." 

I'll often use each golden key, 
And so a happy child I'll be. 



OLD SAWS IN RHYME. 

Actions speak louder than words ever do; 
You can't eat your cake and hold on to it, too. 

When the cat is away the little mice play; 
Where there is a will there is always a way. 

One's deep in the mud as the other in the mire; 
Don't jump from the frying pan into the fire. 

There's no use in crying o'er milk that is spilt; 
No accuser is needed by conscience of guilt. 

There must be some fire wherever there's smoke 
The pieces are hid when the pitcher is broke. 

By rogues falling out honest men get their due ; 
Whoever it fits, he must put on the shoe. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 73 



All work and no play will make Jack a dull boy; 
A thing of much beauty is ever a joy. 

A half loaf is better than no bread at all ; 
And pride always goeth before a sad fall. 

Fast bind and fast find, have two strings to your bow; 
Contentment is better than riches, you know. 

The devil finds work for hands idle to do; 
A miss is as good as a mile to you. 

You speak of the devil, and he's sure to appear; 
You can't make a silk purse out of a cow's ear. 

A man by his company is always known ; 

If you live in a glass house, never throw a stone. 

When the blind leads the blind both will fall in the ditch ; 
It's better born lucky than being born rich. 

Speech may be silver, but silence is gold ; 
There's never a fool like the fool that is old. 



FOR A VERY LITTLE BOY. 

A big boy could stand up here 

And say a lot to you, 
But I am so very small 

I don't know what to do; 
So if you will pass me by, 

And wait till I am older, 
Then I'll speak a piece to you, 

For I shall be much bolder. 



74 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



GOOD-BY. 

We have but one more word to say, 

As sinks the day to rest : 
We hope you're pleased at what you've heard; 

We've tried to do our best. 

We're glad to see you often here; 

And when you come we'll try 
To entertain you with our words, 

But now we'll say "Good-by." 



THE SCHOOL-MASTER'S GRAVE. 

I stood at the grave of the master — 

The dear old man that died 
At his post in the old log school-house, 

Where we sat side by side ; 
The place looked lorn and lonely 

To me in the shadows dim, 
But a bird in the alder bushes 

Was singing a song to him. 

The flowers we planted above him 

Have gone with the fleeting years; 
We watched them bud and blossom, 

And watered them with tears; 
And oft, when summer twilight 

To earth new beauty gave, 
We turned aside together, 

To stand at the master's grave. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 75 



I see him now as he taught us 

For the last time that day ; 
His face it was sad and tender, 

For his thoughts seemed far away, 
And he looked, the dear old master, 

No longer stern and grim, 
As if the angel in heaven 

Had whispered "Come," to him. 

And as he sat describing 

The customs of foreign lands, 
His face grew white, he trembled, 

The book dropped from his hands ; 
And with a groan that scared us, 

On the desk he bowed his head, 
And we sat silent with horror, 

For we knew that he was dead. 

Then over the school so merry, 

There stole a solemn hush, 
And e'en the song of the robin 

Grew still in the alder-bush. 
And the laugher's face was sober, 

Still was the truant's shout, 
And we felt that for the master 

Forever school was out. 

I thought of the school days jolly, 

Of play-ground, bench and class, 
As I knelt by the grave of the master, 

And parted the long, green grass. 
And I tried to read the inscription 

That the parson wrote for him, 
But the words all ran together, 

For my eyes with tears were dim. 



76 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



The master sleeps where we laid him. 

When the summer day was done j 
You know how the children, weeping, 

Went homeward one by one ; 
And you and I at even, 

When stars lit up the sky, 
Stole back to his grave together, 

To whisper a last ' ' Good-by ! " 

Years have passed, but the master 

On the hill-side sleeps alone, 
And the waving grass of summer 

Hides his memorial stone. 
He was kind, the dear old master, 

Though sometimes stern and grim, 
And I know that the angels of Heaven 
Opened the gate for him ! 

T. C. HarbaugJi. 



A SMART BOY. 

I am a little farmer boy, 

I can do lots of work; 
I help my papa and mamma — 

They know I never shirk. 

Perhaps you think I'm rather small 

To tell what I can do, 
But if you'll hear me, you'll soon see 

I'll do as much as you. 

I feed the hens and turkeys, too, 
And bring in all the wood; 

I can drive the cows to pasture 
As well as papa could. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 77 



When mamma wants an errand done. 

She calls for me to go ; 
She knows I'll never stop to play, 

Unless she tells me so. 

And when my work is o'er I play 

As merry as I can ; 
I'll tell you more that I can do, 

When I'm a "farmer man." 



RHYMING TABLE OF PRESIDENTS. 

The following terse rhyme committed to memory, will 
often be useful. 

The American Presidential line 
Began in seventeen eighty-nine. 
By Washington was the list begun, 
Who ruled two terms, then Adams one ; 
Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, 
Sat for two terms each; and so 
John Quincy Adams came for one, 
While Jackson through two terms did run. 
Harrison died and left four years 
For Tyler ; one term Polk appears ; 
When Taylor died and left three years 
For Fillmore ; one term next for Pierce 
And for Buchanan ; Lincoln then 
Was shot as his second term began, 
And Johnson sat until came Grant 
For two terms; Hayes for one; and scant 
Four months for Garfield, who was killed, 
And Arthur the vacant office filled. 
Then Cleveland came to be a candidate 
For a second term in eighty-eight. 



78 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



THE YEAR'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY. 

FOR TWE1 VE 11 II IK GIRLS. 

January — ■ 

My salutation gay 
I bring on New-Year's day. 
With sharp and cutting blast 
The earth is overcast; 
The streams, in stilled repose, 
Lie under drifting snows , 
I leave ere Boreas quits his reign, 
And rest till New- Year comes again. 

February — 

The briefest stay have I, 

As Winter speedeth by ; 

But each succeeding day 

The sunbeams longer stay 

To warm the earth so bare. 

For early flowers fair ; 

But breezes cold the air doth fill, 

And sternly lingers Winter's chill. 

March— 

I loose the prisoned streams, 
With warm and glowing beams ; 
But restless is my mind, 
And few the friends I find; 
For when the warmth of May 
Floats o'er the balmy day, 
I fling rude blasts so hard and chill 
To gratify my changing will. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. Jg 



April — 

" I'm fickle," so they say ; 

In tears, or gladness gay, 

I while away the hours 

In sunshine or in showers, 

And promise future joy 

That comes without alloy ; 

The swelling buds, the songster's strain, 

Announce that Spring has come again. 

May — 

' ' O beauteous month of May ! " 

Admiring hosts all say. 

I'm charmed with flattering smiles, 

And strive by magic wiles 

To decorate and dress 

In robes of gorgeousness 

The naked earth, the forests bare 

With tints most beautiful and rare. 

June— 

I bathe in sunshine bright, 

And give the shortest night 

In all the year, and more — 

From roses sweet I pour 

The perfume rich and rare, 

To fill the Summer air ; 

The bees glean meadows o'er and o'er, 

Industriously their hives to store. 

July- 

I ripen grain for food 
To feed the multitude ; 
The wavy, heated air 
Is stifling everywhere ; 



8o ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



The thirsty cattle stand 
In swampy meadow land, 
And humming insect life around 
With droning monotones abound. 

August — 

I scourge the land with death ; 

I bring the poisonous breath 

Of heated tropic lands 

And burning eastern sands ; 

In crowded cities sow 

The seeds of death and woe; 

Great storms arise at my command, 

That hurl destruction o'er the land. 

September — 

I speed the orb of day 
To southern clime away ; 
I lengthen hours of rest, 
And weary ones are blest 
By soothing, cooling breeze, 
That whispers through the trees. 
Thus far is joy ; but ere I go 
Fierce equinoctial gales do blow. 

October — 

In foliage rich and rare 

I vie with Spring-time fair ; 

But only bloom hath Spring, 

Whilst fruit, instead, I bring 

To lavish with free hand 

O'er all the happy land; 

And so with generous thought and care 

For Winter's needs I thus prepare. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 81 



November — ■ 

I smite the ungarnered yield 

Of garden, orchard, field ; 

My icy touch is seen 

In glistening crystal sheen ; 

No flowers can withstand 

My cold, relentless hand ; 

With vigorous, firm, unyielding grip, 

The tree unsparingly I strip ; 

Yet give a respite, ere I go, 

By Indian Summer's mellow glow. 

December — 

The poor my coming fear 

The most of all the year ; 

But for the rich and gay, 

They welcome give alway ; 

With me the Christmas tide 

Forever shall abide. 

A solemn duty on me lies, 

To watch and wait while the old year dies. 

All {locked arms) — 

Then harmoniously we bind 
Each to each with spirir kind. 
Winter's cold and Summer's sun 
Needs must be, as seasons run 
On their course. The life of Spring 
Begets the death that Autumn brings. 
Thus round and round will season roll 
Till Time folds up his mighty scroll. 



82 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



I'LL PUT IT OFF. 

Some little folks are apt to say, 
When asked their task to touch, 

" I'll put it off at least to-day ; 
It cannot matter much." 

Time is always on the wing — 
You cannot stop its flight ; 

Then do at once your little tasks — 
You'll happier be at night. 

But little duties still put off. 

Will end in "never done ; 
And " By and by is time enough," 

Has ruined many a one. 



A LITTLE STUDY IN ANATOMY. 

How many bones in the human face ? 
Fourteen, when they're all in place. 
How many bones in the human head ? 
Eight, my child, as I've often said. 
How many bones in the human ear ? 
Four in each, and they help to hear. 
How many bones in the human spine? 
Twenty-four, like a climbing vine. 
How many bones in the human chest ? 
Twenty-four ribs, and two of the rest. 
How many bones the shoulders bind? 
Two in each — one before, one behind. 
How many bones in the human arm ? 
In each arm one ; two in each forearm. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



How many bones in the human wrist ? 

Eight in each, if none are missed. 

How many bones in the palm of the hand? 

Five in each, with many a band. 

How many bones in the fingers ten ? 

Twenty-eight, and by joints they bend. 

How many bones in the human hip ? 

One in each; like a dish they dip. 

How many bones in the human thigh ? 

One in each, and deep they lie. 

How many bones in the human knees ? 

One in each, the knee-pan, please. 

How many bones in the leg from the knee ? 

Two in each, we can plainly see. 

How many bones in the ankle strong ? 

Seven in each, but none are long. 

How many bones in the ball of the foot ? 

Five in each, as the palms are put. 

How many bones in the toes, half a score ? 

Twenty-eight, and there are no more. 

And now altogether these many bones weight, 

And they count in the body two hundred and eight. 



NATURE. 

There is never a flower 
That peeps from the earth, 

But the sun has power 
To gladden its birth. 

There is never a shower 

In its gentle fall 
On tree, vine, or flower, 

But will cheer them all. 



84 A CME DECLA MA TION B O OK. 



There is never a river, 

As it winds by a lea, 
But takes from the Giver 

Some gift to the sea. 

There is never a sorrow 

Of the gloomy to-day, 
But a brighter to-morrow 

Will waft it away. 

There is never a mind 
From the Creator's mold 

But in which we may find 

'Mong the dross some pure gold. 



A STRIKE. 

Once upon an evening dreary, 
As I pondered, sad and weary, 
O'er the basket with the mending from the wash the day 
before ; 
As I thought of countless stitches 
To be placed in little breeches, 
Rose my heart rebellious in me, as it oft had done before, 
At the fate that did condemn me, when my daily task was 
o'er, 
To that basket evermore. 

John, with not a sign or motion, 
Sat and read the Yankee Notion, 
With no thought of the commotion 

Which within me rankled sore. 
" He," thought I, "when day is ended, 
Has no stockings to be mended, 
Has no babies to be tended, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 85 



He can sit and read and snore; 
He can sit and read and rest him ; 

Must I work thus evermore ? " 
And my heart rebellious answered, 

''Nevermore, no, nevermore." 

For though I am but a woman, 
Every nerve within is human, 
Aching, throbbing, overworked, 
Mind and body sick and sore, 
I will strike. When day is ended, 
Though the stockings are not mended, 
Though my course can't be defended, 
Safe "behind the closet door 
Goes the basket with the mending, and I'll haunted be no 

more. 
In the daylight shall be crowded all the work that I will do; 
When the evening lamps are lighted, / will read the papers, 
too. 



HOPE ON. 

'Tis the part of a coward to brood 

O'er the past that is withered and dead ; 

What though the heart's roses are ashes and dust? 
What though the heart's music be fled ? 
Still shine the grand heavens o'erhead, 

When the voice of an angel thrills clear on the soul, 

"Gird about thee thine armor, press on to the goal ! 

If the faults or the crimes of thy youth 

Are a burden too heavy to bear, 
What hope can rebloom on the desolate waste 

Of a jealous and craven despair? 

Down, down with the fetters of fear ! 



86 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



In the strength of thy valor and manhood arise, 
With the faith that illumes and the will that defies. 

" Too late ! " through God's infinite world, 
From His throne to life's nethermost fires — 

"Too late!" is a phantom that flies at the dawn 
Of the soul that repents and aspires. 
If pure thou hast made thy desires, 

There's no height the strong wings of immortals may gain, 

Which in striving to reach thou shalt strive for in vain. 

Then up to the contest with fate, 

Unbound by the past which is dead ! 
What though the heart's roses are ashes and dust ? 

What though the heart's music be fled ? 

Still shine the fair heavens o'erhead; 
And sublime as the angel who rules in the sun 
Beams the promise of peace when the conflict is won. 



ENGLISH SOVEREIGNS. 

First William the Norman, 

Then William his son ; 
Henry, Stephen and Henry, 

Then Richard and John. 
Next Henry the Third, 

Edwards one, two, and three ; 
And again after Richard, 

Three Henrys we see, 
Two Edwards, third Richard, 

If rightly I guess; 
Two Henrys, sixth Edward, 

Queen Mary, Queen Bess. 
Then Jamie the Scotchman, 

Then Charles whom they slew, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 87 



Yet received aher Cromwell 

Another Charles too. 
Next Jamie the Second 

Ascended the throne, 
Then William and Mary 

Together came on. 
Then Anne, four Georges, 

And William fourth passed, 
God sent Queen Victoria ; 

May she long be the last! 



AN APOLOGY FOR FLIRTATION. 

"Ah, women are fickle ! " you tell me; 

" Well, yes — if by fickle you mean 
A trifle less false than you men are, 

And_greatly more true than we seem." 

' * But women are cruel — so cruel ! 

They flatter and coax for awhile, 
Then tread on the hearts that we give them, 

And deal us a blow with a smile." 

"We are cruel, it may be, but cruel 
In a million of charming ways ; 

So sorry at times to have hurt you — 
So kind on the gloomiest days. 

' ' But you men ! — you calculate nicely 
How near you may go, or how far, 

And never one moment you soften, 
Nor pity the hopes that you mar. 

"And when you at last are successful, 
And the flower floats down to your feet, 



88 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Its colors are no more so perfect — 
Its perfume is no more so sweet. 

" You leave it to lie on the roadside 
(First tramping it down in the dust), 

And fancy that such is your right here — 
To break and to outrage our trust. 

"You think us so weak, till we sting you, 
And give you at last your deserts ; 

And then you turn round in your anger, 
And vow that all women are flirts. 

< " Believe me, that if you would let us 
Be honest and true, as we are — 

Not striving to conquer us always — 
The world would be better by far." 



MY FRIEND AND 1. 

He and I walk different ways, 
He seeks pleasure and what pays ; 
I a lowlier path pursue, 
Doing what I am bid to do. 

He has found the way of wealth, 
I am satisfied with health- 
He has climbed the hill of fame, 
My chief pride is Jesus' name. 

He has pictures, I have peace; 
He has splendor, I have ease ; 
I have comfort, he has care ; 
He has parties, I have prayer. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



He is prospered, I am blest ; 

He is harassed, I have rest ; 

He has acres of grassy sod, 

I have heaven and Christ and God. 

His proud home shall pass away, 
Mine shall shine in endless day; 
He may lose his fair renown, 
I shall win a fadeless crown. 



THE CONDUCT OF LIFE. 

Be it good that we do, let us do it, 

Giving soul and our strength to the deed ; 

Let us pierce the hard rock and pass through it, 
And compass the thing that we need. 

Does Fate, as dark cloud, hang over, 
And cover our heads from the light ? 

Does hate mock the heart of the lover? 
Must wrong be the victor of right ? 

Yet in Fate there is freedom for each one 

To make or to mar, as he will ; 
And the bolts of ill-fortune that reach one 

May maim, but they never shall kill. 

Ever onwards and upwards pursuing 

The aim that is thine for the day, 
Adding strength to thy strength by thy doing, 

Thou shalt gain it, nor faint by thy way. 

And thou that art busied with small things, 
Though menial thy labor may be, 



9 o ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



Do thy utmost in that and in all things, 
Thou still shalt be noble and free. 

Dost thou love? let it be with full measure, 

Nor mingle with coldness or hate 
Of others the joy of thy pleasure, 

The passion that crowns thy estate. 

He to every man just; and to woman 

Be gentle, and tender, and true ; 
For thine own do thy best ; but for no man 

1 )o less than a brother should do. 

So living thy days to full number, 

In peace thou shalt pass to the grave ; 

Thou shalt lie down, and rest thee, and slumber, 
Beloved by the good and the brave. 



ANOTHER DAY. 

How often is the pilgrim's way 
Beset with sorrow, pain and care, 

Until the burdens of to-day 

Seem more than one poor heart can bear, 

And ever doth a wall arise 

Between him and to-morrow's skies. 

The steps or stitches we may take, 

The little trials we may know, 
Though bravely borne for love's dear sake, 

May burden and perplex us so 
That night, nor slumber, sets us free 
From fetters of anxiety. 



A CME DE CLA MA TION B O OK. g t 



But thought, the shuttle, will resume 
What weary hands have thrown aside, 

And join within her busy loom 

What sleep's commissioned to divide, 

And on the tired eyelids fall 

Only the shadows from this wall. 

Oh, blessed are the hours of sleep 
That "knit the raveled sleeve of care," 
In poppy-dews our senses steep, 
And all our energies ensnare, 
So that, when morn returns, we may, 
Refreshed, begin another day ! 

Let me not build a wall between 

These fields in which I spend my time ; 

No dense, nor cypress-covered screen 
O'er which I have not power to climb, 

Nor through whose clinks, when this day's done, 

I can behold to-morrow's sun. 

But when in pain and weariness 

At midnight hour I seek my bed, 
Let me throw off the chains that press, 

And wear the conqueror's crown instead; 
Trusting to God, my help alway, 
For what I'll need another day. 

Thus only can I do His will ; 

Thus only health and strength renew, 
That I may faithfully fulfill 

The many tasks I have to do, 
Ere I shall see before me rise 
The shining walls of Paradise! 



92 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



AFTER CHRISTMAS. 

I have lately heard a secret, 

Heard it, too, from truthful lips : 

Santa Claus, the sly old fellow, 
Makes his after-Christmas trips. 

I've been told he has discovered 
Many things that cause him pain : 

Discontent and hateful envy — 
Thoughtful love bestowed in vain. 

He has seen his choicest presents 
Torn and broken and defaced ; 

Santa Claus. though rich and lavish, 
Frowns on willful, wicked waste. 

All unseen he watched some children 
In their pleasant home at play, 

With the very toys he gave them 
On the Merry Christmas day. 

Johnny's rocking-horse was splendid ! 

Gaily decked in red and gold ; 
Katy's doll, as fair a creature 

As a child could wish to hold. 

Johnny's horse was kicked and battered, 
Just because it couldn't neigh ! 

Thought his papa might have brought him 
Two live horses and a sleigh ! 

Katy wished her doll was larger ; 

Wished its eyes were black, not blue; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 93 



Finally grew vexed and threw it — 
Broke its lovely head in two ! 

Santa Claus looked grave and troubled, 
Shook his head and went away ; 

"I'll remember this," he muttered, 
"On another Christmas day ! " 

Then he peered in dismal places, 
Where he was not wont to go; 

Where the hungry, shivering children 
Never any Christmas know. 

And his heart was sad and sorry 
That he could not help them all ; 

And he thought in grief and anger 
Of the broken horse and doll. 

As he took his onward journey, 
He was seen to drop a tear, 

And I'm certain that he whispered, 
" I'll remember this next year! " 

But he has so much to think of, 

And so many things to get, 
Can't the Johnnies and the Katies 

Think of it, if he forget? 



LITTLE MIDGET. 

FOR A VERY LITTLE GIRL. 

My papa sometimes scolds and says 

I'm always in a fidget ! 
But mamma says I keep quite still 

For such a little midget; 



94 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And teacher said to-day, she thought 

That it was very smart 
For such a little thing as I 

To learn a speech by heart. 



RHYMED PROVERBS. 

As by his notes a bird is known, 

So by their discourse men are shown. 

Better it is to lonely be 

Than with the bad keep company. 

Count that day lost whose setting sun 
Sees no kind deed nor good act done. 

Debt is a poverty far worse 
Than carrying an empty purse. 

Each day we live doth form a leaf 
In our life's volume, long or brief. 

Faint heart ne'er won a lady fair; 
To win, one must both do and dare. 

Great streams from tiny sources flow, 
Great lives from small beginnings grow. 

Hope on, hope e'er ! Hope is a friend 
That we shall need until life's end. 

Into your homes let sunshine glow, 
Into your hearts let gladness flow. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 95 



Just as bent the little twig, 

So will the tree be, when grown big. 

Kind words are but little seeds, 

Yet these spring up and bear kind deeds. 

Labor can conquer everything ! 
Then praise of labor let us sing. 

Make haste with care. Who goes too fast 
May find he in the race is last. 

No new thing is there 'neath the sun ! 
All things that shall be hath been done. 

Out of the fullness of the heart 
The mouth its utterings doth impart. 

Pretty is as pretty does, 

And yet how much we think of clothes. 

Quiet content is more than wealth, 
And surely tendeth to good health. 

Read books well writ ; choose friends well bred ; 
Good counsel take ; be wisely led. 

Speech is silver — but silence, gold; 
Then tell not all that you are told. 

Time and tide for no man wait; 

Be quick and prompt, nor come too late. 

United, we shall firmly stand, 
Divided, our foundation's sand. 



96 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Vanity, vanity, all is vain, 
Soundeth the preacher's sad refrain. 

Who to his friends his money lends, 
May lose both money and his friends. 

Excelsior ! Go up ! Go higher ! 
Nor be content with clay and mire. 

Youth is the time to sow good seeds, 
And wage a warfare 'gainst the weeds. 

Zeal in our work, without discretion, 

Like pointless wit, makes slight impression. 



CALLING. 

(The little girl who recites this should be dressed in a long- dress, have 
hat on her head and a basket on her arm.) 

Do you not think I look funny ? 

I have come to make you a call. 
I have my work in my basket, 

My mending and knitting and all. 

The children are all well, I thank you, 

But baby who has a bad cold ; 
She's the dearest little baby, 

And she'll soon be half a year old. 

She came to our home last Christmas, 

Yet it seems only yesterday ; 
How pretty she looked, the darling ! 

Her name is Miss Violet May. 



A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 97 



I cannot make calls to-morrow, 
For I have my cooking to do ; 

I must make some pies and puddings, 
And do enough hard work for two. 

And all because my naughty cook, 

Got cross and went away ; 
We mothers do have such hard times 

In getting a girl who will stay. 

Good-bye, you must come and see me ; 

Don't ask me, I cannot stay; 
I must go right home to the children, 

They'll be in mischief while I'm away. 



A PLACE FOR EVERY MAN, AND EVERY MAN 
IN HIS PLACE. 

The Brewers should to Malta go, 

The Loggerheads to Scilly ■ 
The Quakers to the Friendly Isles, 

The Furriers all to Chili. 

From Spithead, Cooks go o'er to Greece ; 

And while the Miser waits 
His passage to the Guinea coast, 

Spendthrifts are in the Straits. 

Spinsters should to the Needles go, 

Wine-bibbers to Burgundy ; 
Gourmands should lunch at Sandwich Isles, 

Wags in the Bay of Fundy. 

Musicians hasten to the Sound — 
The surpliced Priest to Rome ; 



98 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



While still the race of Hypocrites 
At Canton are at home. 

Lovers should hasten to Good Hope- 
To some Cape Horn is pain ; 

Debtors should go to Oh-i-o, 
And sailors to the Maine. 

Hie, Bachelors, to the United States ! 

Maids to the Isle of Man ; 
Let Gardeners all to Botany go, 

And Shoeblacks to Japan. 

Thus emigrants and misplaced men 

Will no longer vex us ; 
And all that aren't provided for 

Had better go to Texas. 



MIND CURE. 

Think health, and health will find you, 

As certain as the day, 
And pain will lag behind you, 

And lose you on the way. 

Think love, and love will meet you, 

And go where'er you go, 
And fate can no more treat you 

Like some malicious foe. 

Think joy, and joy will hear you, 
For thoughts are always heard, 

And it shall nestle near you, 
Like some contented bird. 



A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 99 



Whate'er your sad condition — 
Whate'er your woes and pains — 

Bright thoughts shall bring fruition, 
As surely as God reigns. 



QUIET WAYS ARE BEST. 

What's the use in worrying, 

Of hurrying 

And scurrying, 

Everybody flurrying 
And breaking up their rest, 
When everything is teaching us. 
Preaching and beseeching us 
To settle down and end the fuss, 

For quiet ways are best. 
The rain that trickles down in showers 
A blessing brings to thirsty flowers, 
And gentle zephyrs gather up 
Sweet fragrance from each brimming cup. 
There's ruin in the tempest's path, 
There's ruin in a voice of wrath, 

And they alone are blest 
Who early learn to dominate 
Themselves, their violence abate, 
And prove by their serene estate 

That quiet ways are best. 

Nothing's gained by worrying, 

By hurrying 

And scurrying ; 
With fretting and with flurrying 

The temper's often lost; 



ioo ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And in pursuit of some small prize 
We rush ahead and are not wise, 
And find the unwonted exercise 

A fearful price has cost. 
'Tis better far to join the throng 
That do their duty right along ; 
Reluctant they to make a fuss, 
Or make themselves ridiculous. 
Calm and serene in heart and nerve, 
Their strength is always in reserve, 

And nobly stands each test ; 
And every day and all about, 
By scenes within and scenes without, 
We can discern with ne'er a doubt, 

That quiet ways are best. 



LITTLE BY LITTLE. 

One step, and then another, 

And the longest walk is ended; 
One stitch, and then another, 

And the longest rent is mended; 
One brick upon another, 

And the highest wall is made ; 
One flake upon another, 

And the deepest snow is laid. 

So the little coral workers, 

By their slow but constant motion, 
Have built those pretty islands 

In the distant dark blue ocean, 
And the noblest undertakings 

Man's wisdom hath conceived, 
By oft-repeated efforts 

Have been patiendy achieved. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 101 



HOW HE'D PAINT IT. 

"If you an artist were," she said, 
"And wished to paint a view 

Of grand old ocean in a storm, 
Pray what would be the hue?" 

" I'd paint the waves a rose; the wind, 

I'd make it blue for fun ; 
But wait until the storm was o'er, 

And then I'd paint it dun." 



FACE TO FACE. 

If my face could only promise that its color would remain, 
If my heart were only. certain it would hide the moment's 

' pain, 
I would meet you, and would greet you, in the old familiar 

tone, 
And nought should ever show you the wrong that you have 

done. 

If the melody of spring-tide awoke no wild refrain, 

If the autumn's golden burthen awoke no living pain, 

I would meet thee, and would greet thee, as years ago we 

met, 
Before our hearts were shipwrecked on the ocean of regret. 

If my woman's soul were stronger, if my heart were not so 

true, 
I should long have ceased remembering the love I had for 

you, 
But I dare not meet or greet thee in the old familiar way, 
Until we meet in Heaven, when tears have passed away. 



io2 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



A SONG. 

Is any one sad in the world, I wonder ? 

Does any one weep on a day like this ? 
With the sun above, and the green earth under, 

Why, what is life but a dream of bliss ? 

With the sun, and the skies, and the birds above me, 
Birds that sing as they wheel and fly — 

With the winds to follow and say they love me — 
Who could be lonely ? Oh no, not I ? 

Somebody said in the street this morning, 
As I opened my window to let in the light, 

That the darkest day of the world was dawning ■ 
But I looked, and the East was a gorgeous sight. 

One who claims that he knows about it 

Tells me the Earth is a vale of sin ; 
But I, and the bees, and the birds — we doubt it, 

And think it a world worth living in. 

Some one says that hearts are fickle, 

That love is sorrow, that life is care, 
And the reaper Death, with his shining sickle, 

Gathers whatever is bright and fair. 

I told the thrush, and we laughed together, 
Laughed till the woods were all aring ; 

And he said to me, as he plumed each feather, 
' ' Well, people must croak, if they cannot sing." 

Up he flew, but his song remaining, 
Rang like a bell in my heart all day, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 103 



And silenced the voices of weak complaining 
That pipe like insects along the way. 

O world of light, and O world of beauty ! 

Where are the pleasures so sweet as thine ? 
Yes, life is love, and love is duty ; 

And what heart sorrows ? O ho, not mine ! 



Ella Wheeler, in Chicago Trib 



unc. 



BE MERRY WHILE YOU MAY. 

" There is a crook in every lot," 

A shadow on the road 
Through which we journey on to reach 

A happier abode. 
As surely as the evening comes 

To close the eyes of day, 
Will grief appear ; and so, my dear, 

Be merry while you may. 

We cannot say to joy, " Remain," 

Nor unto grief, "Depart; " 
The morning and the night must come 

To every human heart. 
And though the twilight hour dispels 

The cheerful, sunny ray, 
Shed not a tear ; but oh ! my dear, 

Be merry while you may. 

The sky may not be always bright, 

The sea not always calm, 
Nor breezes bring an argosy 

Of spices or of balm. 
'Tis time enough to weep and mourn 

When sorrow has its day ; 



c4 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And you'll agree 'tis well to be 
Right merry while we may. 

Along the shores of life the tides 

Have ceaseless ebb and flow; 
And through the year the seasons have 

Their time to come and go. 
Then let us make the best of life, 

And if not always gay 
Or full of glee, why shouldn't we 

Be merry while we may. 



MAUD MULLER. 

A NEW VERSION. 

Maud Muller on von schummer day, 
Dings she go out und pitch some hay. 

Under her hat midout some brim 

She saw dot schudge und schmiles at him. 

He rides him down de lane dot day 
Und Maud was pitchen mit dot hay. 

He does not know not mooch to talk, 
Und he vonders to see Maud Muller valk 

Mid all dose stubble und her bare feet, 
So nice she look und smile so schweet. 

So he rides him oop close to dot vence 
Und dings shoost vat he moost gommence. 

Maud Muller stopped von bit or so 
To bick one brier from her pig toe. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 105 



She saw dot schudge stop by dot road, 
Und Hans drive off mid a vagon load. 

So soon she leans on dot fork pitch, 
Dot schudge geds off und his mule hitch. 

Und den he says he dings it rains, 
Und dalks of vedder und rooster vanes. 

Und ven Hans cooms und load to get 
She stands dare mit dot pitchfork yet. 

At last like von dat vants more peer, 
Dot schudge he rides avay mid here. 

Maud Muller looked und said, "I vow 
It would be nice to be his frow. 

' He geds me den some Grecian bendt, 
Und ear-rings vot cosd fifty cent. 

" Und den I tings we have mooch peer, 
Und not no more I hay pitch here." 

Dot schudge he dings ven he get away 
Dot Deutscher girl mid barefoot hay, 

She would be shtout to do some chores 
Wen its doo bad to go out doors. 

He took von frow who got some tin, 
Und Maud she cooms und vork for him. 

Und Hans he never forgets dot day, ' 

For dot rain cooms down und spoils dot hay. 



io6 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



GRANDPA'S SOLILOQUY. 

It wasn't so when I was young, 
We used plain language then ; 

We didn'i speak of " them galoots," 
When meaning boys and men. 

When speaking of the nice hand-write 

Of Joe, or Tom, or Bill, 
We did it plain — we didn't say, 

'• He slings a nasty quill." 

Then, when we met a good old friend 

We hadn't lately seen, 
We greeted him — but didn't say, 

"Hello, you old sardine." 

The boys got mad sometimes and fit ; 

We spoke of kicks and blows; 
But now they " whack him in the snoot," 

And "paste him in the nose." 

Once, when a youth was turned away 

From her he held most dear, 
He walked off on his feet — but now 

He " crawls off on his ear." 

We used to dance when I was young, 

And used to call it so; 
But now they don't — they only "sling 

The light fantastic toe." 

Of death we spoke in language plain, 

That no one did perplex, 
But in these days one doesn't die — 

He "passes in his checks." 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 107 



We praised a man of common sense ; 

" His judgment's good," we said; 
But now they say : ' ' Well, that old plum 

Has got a level head." 

It's rather sad the children now 

Are learning all such talk; 
They've learned to "chin" instead of chat, 

And "waltz" instead of walk. 

To little Harry yesterday — 

My grandchild, aged two — 
I said : ' ' You love grandpa ? " said he : 

"You bet your boots I do." 

The children bowed to strangers once, 

It is no longer so — 
The little girls, as well as boys, 

Now greet you with "hello! " 

Oh, give me back the good old days, 
When both the old and young 

Conversed in plain old-fashioned ways, 
And slang was never slung. 



THE SETTING SUN. 

Mamma, if the sun is really setting, 
Where's his nest, and what's it like? 

Is it hid within some tree-tops, 
Or beyond the mountain pike? 

Is it made all bright and yellow, 

Just exactly like the sun ? 
And, if little boys go by it, 

Does he hop off then and run ? 



10S ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And the eggs, too, are they golden, 
Like the ones the old goose laid ? 

I should think the sun would burn them 
If on the nest all night he stayed. 

'Cause you know he's very fiery, 
When he's sailing in the sky. 

Are the little suns hatched daily ? 
And can I find them if I try ? 



GRAN'MA AL'A'S DOES. 

I want to mend my wagon, 

And has to have some nails ; 
Jus' two free will be plenty, 

We're going to haul our rails. 
The splendidest cob fences 

We're makin' ever was ! 
I wis' you'd help us find 'em — 

Gran'ma al'a's does. 

My horse's name is Betsey ; 

She jumped and broked her head. 
I put her in the stable, 

And fed her milk and bread. 
The stable's in the parlor ; 

We didn't make no muss — 
I wis' you'd let it stay there — 

Gran'ma al'a's does. 

I's goin' to the cornfield, 
To ride on Charlie's plow ; 

I 'spect he'd like to have me ; 
I wants to go right now. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 109 



Oh, won't I gee up awful, 

And whoa like Charlie whoas? 

I wis' you wouldn't bozzer — 
Gran'ma never does. 

I wants some bread and butter; 

I's hungry worstest kind; 
But Taddie musn't have none, 

'Cause she wouldn't mind. 
Put plenty sugar on it; 

I tell you what, I knows 
It's right to put on sugar — 

Gran'ma al'a's does. 



IS THERE ANY BY AND BY? 

They tell me that 'tis all of life 

To live and toil and die ; 
Ending at once all care and strife — 

There is no by and by. 

Our cherished hopes that we shall find 

A heaven beyond the sky 
Are but the merest mists of mind — 

There is no by and by. 

On " Earth to earth and dust to dust " 

Alone can we rely ; 
There's nothing further we can trust — 

There is no by and by. 

Oh ! can it be that all our hopes 
Of final home and heaven, 

Of life and rest, of joy and peace, 
In one short hour are riven ? 



no ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Will those dear friends we've loved so true 

In endless slumber lie ? 
No fond embrace all ages through ; 

No meeting by and by ? 

This curious web we here call life, 

Unfinished soon must lie, 
The rarest pattern incomplete, 

If there's no by and by. 

Ah ! tell me, ye who look beyond 

The range of mortal eye, 
Is this alone the sum of life ? 

Is there no by and by ? 



SHE WOULD HAVE CHEWING GUM. 

The bright red sun was setting on the egg of morrow's 
dawn, 

As a Vassar girl strolled, pigeon-toed, adown the level 
lawn ; 

And the fading rays with roses wreathed the hair of one 
who lay 

In the gath'ring twilight lonely, filled with terror and dis- 
may. 

"She may cry, and howl, and kick up, but she wouldn't 
do my sum, 

And I'll never, never, never let her chew my chewing 
gum ! " 

''Teacher!" — Bessie's white lips faltered, as she pointed to 

the maid — 
' ' Do hear that horrid creature ! : Do you know what she 

has said ? 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. 1 1 1 



In her dark and gloomy pocket she's carrying in her loose 

Boarding-school companion much as twenty sticks of 
spruce, 

And she says I shall have none — I ! her only friend, her 
chum ; " 

And she spoke in husky whispers, " I must have her chew- 
ing gum ! " 

"Bessie," calmly spoke the teacher (every word froze in 

her ear), 
"For years I've taught at Vassar, and I will not interfere; 
I know the regulations, and respect the rules and laws ; 
I am hereto educate your mind, and not supply your jaws. 
I have done my duty ever ; I've been cool, discreet and 

mum; 
But I can't make Bertha Underwood give you her chewing 

gum." 

Wild the girl's eyes, pale her features, as she totters up 

the stair, 
And the dews fall in soft pity as the stars see her despair. 
Not a moment stops the maiden till she gains the upper 

flight, 
And stands out in the darkness like an angel carved in night. 
Now she enters Bertha's chamber, and pants, "Now let 

her come!" 
Stills her frightened heart's wild beating, ' ' I must have her 

chewing gum ! " 

Far out, the distant city seems a tiny, sparkling speck, 
Where she well remembers often buying spruce gum by 

the peck. 
Above, the throbbing heavens seemingly reflect her soul, 
In which the spheres of vengeance their mighty music roll. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Shall she still their diapason? Shall she smite their an- 
thems dumb ? 

She crushes swift the feeling ; she must have that chewing 
gum. 

Quick she strips the bed of clothing ; quick she wraps her 

in a sheet, 
And the garment, winding tenderly, clothes her from head 

to feet ; 
Then in a darkened corner, like a member of the host 
Who sometimes wander back to earth, she stands, a rigid 

ghost ; 
And, panting, still she listens till she hears the fairy drum 
Of Bertha's fairy footsteps, bringing up that chewing gum. 

Such a yell ! A quivering figure lies trembling on the floor; 
The very winds stop sighing as they shrink back from the 

door. 
Swift the ghostly Bessie steals from where the gath'ring 

shadows curl, 
And bends in flattering triumph before the prostrate girl ; 
With trembling hands she searches in the pocket of her 

chum, 
And cries out in her madness, "I must have her chewing 

gum." 

The pale, soft moon rose slowly ; each bright star bent her 

head, 
As the patron orb of Vassar threw her rays around the dead ; 
And, like another moon, the teacher climbed the winding 

stair, 
To find fair Bertha robed in death, and Bessie kneeling 

there, 
With no remorse on that pale face, as she whispered softly, 

' l Come ! 
The angels have got Bertha, but I've got her chewing gum ! " 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. 113 



WHAT TO DIG FOR. 

FOR TWO LITTLE BOYS. 

First Boy — 

I'm going to California, 
As smart as any man, 
To dig among the shining gold, 
For I am sure I can. 

Second Boy — 

You going to California? 

What do you think you'll do, 
To be so far away from home, 
A little boy like you ? 

First Boy — 

I know I am a little boy, 

But I am growing old ; 
And soon you'll hear that I am off 

Among the mines of gold. 

Second Boy — 

I think you'd better go to school 

And study all you can, 
And never think of digging gold 

Till you become a man. 

First Boy — 

But don't you know 'twill all be gone, 

And then what shall I do ? 
I must be going soon, I'm sure — 

Come, now, won't you go too? 



114 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



Second Boy — 

Well, I should like to go with you, 

But what would father say ? 
And mother, too, would feel so bad 

If I should go away. 

First Boy — 

Our fathers, and our mothers, too, 

Would like a little gold ; 
If we could get a lump or two, 

'Twould help them when they're old. 

Second Boy — 

I think we'd better stay at home, 
And dig for knowledge bright ; 
'Twill be much better than the gold, 
With all its dazzling light. 



AN ADDRESS OF WELCOME. 

TO BE SPOKEN BY A LITTLE GIRL. 

Teacher said I was to speak the welcome to you this 
afternoon, and I've just been wondering, and wondering 
what she wants me to say welcome for, when not one of 
you have thanked us for anything, that I know of. But 
then, I know that everybody says I get everything back- 
wards, so I just guess she thinks some of you will forget 
to thank us for speaking here before you great big people, 
so I am to go ahead with the welcome, and now I hope 
you'll tell me, "Thank you." 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 115 



WIFE WANTED. 

There are plenty, kind sir, to be had on demand, 
If you are willing to pay as you do for your land. 
In kitchen, in parlor, in business, in banks, 
In the school-room — the press — but they don't work 

for thanks. 
Say, what can you offer for the great boon of life, 
So full of cash value as you ask in your wife ? 
Can you give health for health? Can you give skill 

for skill? - 
Have you brains to match intellect and freedom of 

will? 
Or do you belong to the slaves of the still ? 
Can you give love for her love? sound manhood for 

strength ? 
Affectionate care, and oneness at length ? 
Religion? and principle ? A purpose in life ? 
Bring worth in yourself and I'll find you that wife. 



WHICH IS BEST. 

FOR SIX LITTLE GIRLS. 

First Girl — 

I'm a little country lassie ; 

I can iron, churn, and bake, 
Wash the dishes, feed the poultry, 

Mix a famous ' ' Johnny-cake ; " 
Ride the horses down to water, 

Drive the cows to pastures green. 
I would not exchange my station 

For the throne of England's Queen. 



n6 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Second Girl — 

Mother calls me little student ; 

I can cipher, read, and spell, 
Draw a map, or bound a country, 

And in mental I excel. 
I shall climb the hill of knowledge, 

To its very top will go, 
Then success will crown my efforts, 

Teacher says ; is it not so ? 

Third Girl— 
I am nothing but a noodle, 

Mother told me so to-day, 
But I really can not study 

When the very fields are gay. 
Birds are calling from the tree-tops, 

Spring is waking lake and rill ; 
You may mope o'er prosy lessons, 

I will be a noodle still. 

Fourth Girl — 

I'm a little " city maiden," 

You would know this by my style ; 
Quite unlike those "country rustics," 

With their broad, uncourteous smile ; 
I'll not soil my hands by labor, 

Mine were made for higher things. 
Papa calls me " Little Angel! " 

All I lack, he says, is wings. 

Fifth Girl- 

I'm my mother's "little helper," 

And am happy all day long ; 
I can bring dear papa's slippers, 

Sing the baby's cradle song ; 



A CME DE CLA MA TION BOOK. 117 



Rock him till the angels' whispers 

Make him smile from dreamland-shore ; 

Run a thousand ways for mother — 
Can a little girl do more ? 

Sixth Girl {very small) — 

I'se my mamma's 'ittle darling ; 

Don't you fink I'se fresh and sweet? 
With the roses at my shoulder, 

And my muslin d'ess so neat? 
Mamma made me dis on purpose, 

'Cause I'se going to speak to you ; 
It is lovely, don't you fink so ? 

Wish 'twas yours ? I bet you do ! 



HUSBAND WANTED. 

Wanted — A husband to handle the plow, 
And make a good living by "sweat of his brow," 
And when he has made it, to share with his wife, 
And give her a chance for some comfort in life. 
A man who can work with his hands or his brain, 
And never, tho' weary, come home to complain ; 
Who can amiably drop brief, or ledger, or book, 
To sympathize some when his wife has no cook ; 
Who can scatter his flowers through her life, and not 

save 
Them all till she dies — to pile up on her grave ; 
Deal in every-day things with superior mind, 
Be gentle, yet strong, intellectual, refined, 
A sort of a seraph and husband combined ! 

A husband who is jolly and kind, 

With plenty of money, and a fine, noble mind, 



n8 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



With a heart that is warm and a head that is cool, 
Who doesn't get angry and act like a fool ; 
Who loves his own home as a bird loves her nest, 
Is as kind to his wife as he is to his guest. 
In his language so moral, his habits so neat, 
That to be in his presence would indeed be a treat 
Must hang his own bootjack, his hat and his coat, 
Keep wood that is seasoned, for temperance vote, 
A creature who counsels his helpmate, to find 
Her judgment quite helpful and just to his mind, 
A sort of a lover and husband combined. 

A man who can handle the hoe, 
To hoe ground in summer, in winter the snow ; 
To raise luscious fruits that a lady can eat — 
Not the worm-eaten stuff you everywhere meet ; 
Who knows how to plow, to reap and to mow, 
Make a good stack of hay and feed to the cow ; 
A man who keeps his hands out of his breeches 
And saves the expense of sewing over the stitches ; 
And cuts his own wood — an item that grows 
Quite highly expensive, as every one knows ; 
A common-sensed fellow, and still with a mind, 
To stay home o' nights and be very kind, 
A true sort of husband and a lover combined. 

A husband who can work a farm, 

And when the house is on fire can give the alarm ; 

A good-looking fellow, who won't make rows, 

Will feed the pigs and milk the cows ; 

Who won't wear the best clothes he has every day, 

To work in the garden and rake the hay; 

Will wear patched clothes all the days of his life, 

And doing it so as to save for his wife; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 119 



Call his wife "darling," "precious," and" honey, 5 
And keep saving faster and faster his money, 
Will sign the pledge with a good will and mind, 
Always ready, and never behind ; 
And not a demon and husband combined. 



GEOMETRIC FIGURES. 

DRAWING EXERCISE. 

(In this exercise the children should stand at the board and draw as 
they recite.) 

All— 
We are curious little creatures, 

With our varied forms and faces ; 
Can you tell our different features — 

Speak our names and give us places ? 

First Boy — The Point. 
I am such a little fellow 

I'll speak first, lest I'm forgot; 
Without length, or breadth, or thickness, 
I am but a point or dot. 

Second Boy — Line. 

If upright or horizontal, 

Or obliquely I incline ; 
Whether straight or curved you see me, 

I am what is called a line. 

Third Boy — Parallels. 
Like railroad tracks, or rails of fences, 

Or many things that I could tell, 
Which side by side extend so even, 

Are lines which we call parallel. 



1 20 A CME DE CLA MA TION B OK. 



Fourth Boy — Angle. 

Should two of us be joined together 

At one end, and then we take 
Different directions, wholly, 

Tis an angle that we make. 

Fifth Boy — Kinds of Angles. 

When the lines are perpendicular 

A right angle you will find ; 
Acute is smaller, obtuse is larger, 
Here is one of every kind. 

Sixth Boy — Surface. 

Put three or more of us together, 

Join us end to end so close, 
Though our forms may often vary, 
Yet a surface we enclose. 

Seventh Boy — Triangle. 

Draw these lines as I will show you, 

Count them — here are one, two, three ; 
And because there are three angles, 

'Tis a triangle, you see. 

Eighth Boy — Kinds of Triangles. 
Very many kinds there may be, 

Right-angled, acute, obtuse, 
Isosceles, and equilateral ; 

Don't these names your mind confuse? 

Ninth Boy — Square. 

If we have four sides all equal, 

Four right angles where they meet, 
And have drawn our figure neatly, 

We shall have a square complete. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 121 



Tenth Boy— Oblong. 
Let two sides be now extended, 

Something like a window-frame, 
Or like the door-mat in the entry, 
Then an oblong is my name. 

All. 

Now that you've become acquainted 

With these outlines we have made, 
You will find they fit quite neatly 

Into almost every trade. 



WOMAN'S SPHERE. 

They talk about a woman's sphere 

As though it had a limit ; 
There's not a place in earth or heaven, 
There's not a task to mankind given, 
There's not a blessing or a woe, 
There's not a whisper, yes or no, 
There's not a life, or death, or birth 
That has a feather's weight of worth 

Without a woman in it. 



A RESOLVE. 

God helping me, 
I promise not to buy, drink, sell, or give 
Alcoholic liquors while I live ; 
From all tobacco I'll abstain, 
And never take God's name in vain. 



122 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



THE FAME THAT I AM SEEKING. 

I may never paint a picture, 
Like the ancient masters grand ; 

For I have not the artist's vision, 
Nor his firm and skillful hand. 

I may never write a poem, 

That shall live through endless time ; 
For the glory of the poet 

And his fame may not be mine. 

I may not chant the music, 

That shall charm the waiting throng ; 
For I am not a skilled musician. 

And possess no gift of song. 

I may never go to battle, 

Like a warrior true and brave ; 

I may never wear the honors 
Of a martyred soldier's grave. 

But where'er I see the wine-glass 
Marching boldly through the land, 

I would strike to ease the nation 
With a conqueror's steady hand. 

I would paint the cursed rum-shop, 
Paint the landlord, paint the crime ; 

And paint the luring, murderous serpent, 
Coiling in the ruby wine. 

I would write a little poem, 

That should warn man of its wiles; 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. \l 



Make them shun the luring wine-glass, 
Hate, despise, and scorn its smiles, 

I would send some little message 
On the holy wings of song; 

Chant some little lay of mourning 
O'er the wine-glass' hellish wrong. 

And, although the wreath of fame 
My brow may never wear ; 

In heaven God shall write my name, 
And crown me as His heir. 



THE OLD TREE. 

"Old tree, how low you seem to stoop, 
How much your trunk is bent ; 

Why don't you make a rise and grow 
Up straight, as you were meant ? 

And has the old tree found a voice ? 

And does it speak and sigh ? 
No ! 'twas the soft sweet wind that came 

To stir its leaves on high. 

But still the young boy thought he heard 

The old tree sigh ' ' too late ! 
When I was young it was the time 

To come and bend me straight. 

"They should have bound me to a prop, 
And made me straight and fast ; 

A child, like you, could bend me then, 
But now my time is past. 



124 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



" No use for men to waste their strength, 

And pull their ropes at me; 
They could not move my stem an inch, 

For bent I still must be." 

And then the soft wind came once more, 

And set the leaves at play, 
So that the young boy thought lie heard 

The old tree sigh and say : 

' ' O child ! be wise while you are young, 

Nor bend nor stoop to sin ; 
Drive out the bad thoughts from your head, 

And keep the good ones in. 

" Don't think you may be bad in youth, 
And one day change your plan ; - 

Just what you grow up from a child, 
You will be as a man. 

" No use to try when you are old, 
To mend and grow up straight ; 

For all good men that pass you then 
Will sigh and say ' Too late ! ' 

' ' Take for your prop the Book of God, 

And by its rules be bound ; 
And let the wise words of your friend 

Be stakes to fence you round. 

1 ' So straight and strong you shall be found, 

A joy and praise to see ; 
And one day in the courts of God 

You'll stand a fair young tree." 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK 125 



THROWING KISSES. 

FOR A VERY LITTLE GIRL. 

Don't think, dear friends, that I'm too small 

To fill a place like this; 
I'm big enough to love you all, 

And throw you all a kiss. 

A little word, a look, a smile, 

Will never come amiss ; 
Takes but a moment, as you see, 

To throw you all a kiss. 

It may be that you have at home 

Some boy or little sis, 
Who laughs, and peeps, and when you go, 

Throws after you a kiss. 

SPRING. 

FOR FIVE LITTLE GIRLS. 

First Girl — 

Tell me, sweet crocus — I long so to know — 
How did it seem to you under the snow ? 
Were you afraid of the dark and the cold ? 
How did you know when to creep from the mold ? 

Second Girl — 

Oh, I had never a thought of harm, 

Under my coverlet soft and white. 
Folded so warmly away from the storm, 

All the long winter seemed only a night, 
Till I felt how the earth's heart under me beat, 
And sprang up to sunshine, strong and sweet. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



First Girl — 

Blue-bird, dear blue-bird, and have you come back? 
How could you fly without compass or track ? 
Will you not grieve if some days should be drear — 
Leaving a summer that lasts all the year ? 

Third Girl — 
Bright were the bowers of orange and lime, 

Yet dearer my home in the apple-tree now. 
Daily and nightly I dream of the time 

When my soft fledglings shall rock on the bough. 
I need no compass or chart on my way — 
I heard a voice call me, and could but obey. 

First Girl — 

Little red squirrel, high up in the tree, 
Why do you chatter and scold at me ? 
How have the long months fared with you ? 
Shy little squirrel, O tell me true ! 

Fourth Girl— 

Snug in a hollow I made my nest, 

Lined with the softest of leaves and moss ; 
Nothing it mattered to break my rest, 

How the long branches might writhe and toss ; 
But my nuts — and sweeter than mine were none — 
Were all gathered in autumn, one by one. 

First Girl — 
Say, little brook, why such riot and rout ? 
What is the noise of your babbling about ? 
You cannot surely have stories to tell, 
Shut up so long, like a monk in a cell ! 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 127 



Fifth Girl— 

Ah ! but the fetters that bound me are burst, 

Melted away in the smile of the skies ; 
Down in the meadow the spring-flowers athirst, 
Wait for my coming to open their eyes. [west, 

There's a call on the breeze that blows soft from the 
From my mother, the river — I fly to her breast. 



OLD SAYINGS. 

As poor as a church mouse, as thin as a rail, 
As fat as a porpoise, as rough as a gale ; 
As brave as a lion, as spry as a cat ; 
As bright as a sixpence, as weak as a rat. 

As proud as a peacock, as sly as a fox ; 
As mad as a March hare, as strong as an ox 
As fair as a lily, as empty as air ; 
As rich as Crcesus, as cross as a bear. 

As pure as an angel, as neat as a pin ; 
As smart as a steel-trap, as ugly as sin ; 
As dead as a door-nail, as white as a sheet ; 
As fat as a pan-cake, as red as a beet. 

As round as an apple, as black as your hat ; 
As brown as a berry, as blind as a bat ; 
As mean as a miser, as full as a tick ; 
As plump as a partridge, as sharp as a stick. 

As clean as a penny, as dark as a pall; 
As hard as a mill-stone, as bitter as gall ; 
As fine as a fiddle, as clear as a bell ; 
As dry as a herring, as deep as a well. 



128 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



As light as a feather, as firm as a rock ; 
As stiff as a poker, as calm as a clock ; 
As green as a gosling, as brisk as a bee; 
And now let me stop, lest you weary of me. 



I'M VERY YOUNG. 

I'm very young ! but what of that? 

You once were young as I ; 
And you don't know what I can do 

Until you see me try. 

I cannot tell you all I know — 
I guess I won't tell half; 

For if I should I'm very sure 
You'd only sit and laugh. 



CHRISTMAS BELLS. 

Hark, the Christmas bells are ringing, 

Listen to the angels' song ! 
Join we in the swelling chorus, 

Borne the vaulted skies along. 

Hear the glad refrain repeated, 

From the hill-top, through the glen, 

Wafted on through all the centuries, 
Angels sing "good will to men." 

Angels still are bending o'er us, 
As on bright Judea's plain, 

Waiting to repeat the chorus 
Sung by children once again. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 129 



If our lives are sweet and Christ-like, 

They will echo back again, 
Through the open gates of heaven, 

" Peace on earth, good will to men." 

E. H. Pinkham. 



MOTHER'S FOOL. 

"Tis plain to see," said a farmer's wife, 
" These boys will make their mark in life; 
They were never made to handle a hoe, 
And at once to a college ought to go ; 
There's Fred, he's little better than a fool, 
But John and Henry must go to school." 

"Well, really, wife/' quoth Farmer Brown, 
As he sat his mug of cider down, 
1 ' Fred does more work in a day for me 
Than both his brothers do in three. 
Book larnin' will never plant one's corn, 
Nor hoe potatoes, sure's you're born; 
Nor mend a rod of broken fence — 
For my part, give me common sense." 

But his wife was bound the roost to rule, 
And John and Henry were sent to school, 
While Fred, of course, was left behind, 
Because his mother said he had no mind. 

Five years at school the students spent ; 
Then into business each one went. 
John learned to play the flute and fiddle, 
And parted his hair, of course, in the middle ; 
While his brother looked rather higher than he, 
And hung out a sign, " H. Brown, M. D." 



130 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Meanwhile, at home, their brother Fred 
Had taken a notion into his head; 
But he quietly trimmed his apple trees, 
And weeded onions and planted peas, 
While somehow or other, by hook or crook, 
He managed to read full many a book ; 
Until at last his father said 
He was getting ' ' book larnin' " into his head ; 
"But for all that," added Farmer Brown, 
" He's the smartest boy there is in town." 

The war broke out, and Captain Fred 

A hundred men to battle led, 

And when the rebel flag came down, 

Went marching home as General Brown. 

But he went to work on the farm again, 

And planted corn and sowed his grain ; 

He shingled the barn and mended the fence, 

Till people declared he had common sense. 

Now common sense was very rare, 
And the State House needed a portion there ; 
So the "family dunce" moved into town — 
The people called him Governor Brown ; 
And the brothers who went to the city school 
Came home to live with "mother's fool." 



A GOOD LITTLE BOY. 

I'm papa's "little helper," 
And mamma's " daily joy." 

I'm grandma's "little darling," 
And grandpa's "precious boy. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 131 



Some day I'm going to grow up, 
And be a first-rate farmer, 

And lay up heaps of money 
For papa and for mamma. 



THE CHRISTMAS TREE. 

First Voice — 

Hurrah! hurrah! for the Christmas tree ; 
May it flourish for aye in its greenery ! 
When the winter comes with its whitening snow, 
How proudly the Christmas tree doth grow. 

All— 

Hurrah ! hurrah ! for the Christmas tree ; 
Hurrah! hurrah! for its mirth and glee ; 
When forests of oak have passed from the land, 
The jolly old Christmas tree shall stand. 

Second Voice — 

There are wonderful plants far over the sea, 
But what are they all to the Christmas tree ? 
Does the oak bear candies, the palm tree skates? 
But sugar-plums, trumpets, doll babies, slates, 
Picture-books, elephants, soldiers, cows, 
All grow at once on the Christmas-tree boughs. 

All— Hurrah! Hurrah! etc. 

Third Voice — 
O, the many homes it hath happy made 
When the little ones under its leaves have played: 
O, sweet are the pleasures around it that spring, 
And dear are the thoughts of the past they bring. 



32 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Then long may it flourish, and green may it be, 
The merry, mighty old Christmas tree ! 

All — Hurrah ! Hurrah ! etc. 



"HE LEADETH ME." 

"In pastures green?" Not always; sometimes He 
Who knoweth best, in kindness leadeth me 
In weary ways, where heavy shadows be; 

Out of the sunshine warm and soft and bright, 
Out of the sunshine into darkest night, 
I oft would faint with sorrow and affright, 

Only for this — I know He holds my hand ; 
So, whether led in green or desert land, 
I trust, although I may not understand. 

And by " still waters?" No, not always so; 
Oft times the heavy tempests round me blow, 
And o'er my soul the waves and billows go. 

But when the storm beats loudest, and I cry 
Aloud for help, the Master standeth by. 
And whispers to my soul, " Lo, it is I." 

Above the tempest wild I hear Him say, 
" Beyond this darkness lies the perfect day; 
In every path of thine I lead the way." 

So, where He leads me I can safely go; 
And in the blest hereafter I shall know 
Why, in His wisdom, He hath led me so. 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. 1 33 



HIS BIRTHDAY. 

It is his birthday — his in whom our youth 
Becomes immortal. Nothing good, or sweet, 
Or beautiful, or needful to complete 
The being that he shares, shall suffer blight ; 
All that in us his Father can delight, 

He saves, he makes eternal as his truth. 
Praise him for one another, loyal friends ! 
The friendship he awakens never ends. 

It is his birthday — his, the only One 

Who ever made life's meaning wholly plain. 
Dawn is he to our night! No longer vain 
And purposeless our onward struggling years ; 
The hope he bringeth overfloods our fears — 

Now do we know the Father through the Son ! 
O earth, O heart, be glad on this glad morn ! 
God is with man ! Life, life to us is born ! 



SOCIETY AND SOLITUDE. 

Laugh, and the world laughs with you; 

Weep, and you weep alone ; 
For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth, 

But has trouble enough of its own. 

Sing, and the hills will answer; 

Sigh, it is lost on the air. 
The echoes bound to a joyous sound, 

But shrink from voicing care. 

Rejoice, and men will seek you ; 
Grieve, and they turn and go. 



i 3 4 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



They want full measure of all your pleasure, 
But they do not need your woe. 

Be glad, and your friends are many ; 

Be sad, and you lose them all. 
There are none to decline your nectared wine, 

But alone you must drink life's gall. 

Feast, and your halls are crowded ; 

Fast, and the world goes by. 
Succeed and give, and it helps you to live, 

But no man can help you die. 

There is room in the halls of pleasure 

For a large and lordly train, 
But one by one we must all file on 

Through the narrow aisles of pain. 



CHRISTMAS SONG. 

Christmas time is come again, 

Christmas pleasures bringing; 
Let us join our voices now, 

And Christmas songs be singing. 
Years ago, one starry night, 

Thus the story's given, 
Angel bands o'er Bethlehem's plains 

Sang the songs of heaven. 

Chorus. — Glory be to God on high, 

Peace, good will to mortals ; 
Christ, the Lord, is born to-night, 
Heaven throws wide its portals. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 135 



Angels sang, let men reply, 

And children join their voices ; 
Raise the chorus loud and high, 

Earth and heaven rejoices. 
When we reach that happy place, 

Joyous praises bringing, 
Then before our Father's face 

We shall still be singing. 



Clwrus. — Glory be to God on high, etc. 



CHRISTMAS CAROL. 

How did they keep his birthday then, 
The little fair Christ, so long ago ? 

O, many there were to be housed and fed, 

And there was no place in the inn, they said, 
So into the manger the Christ must go, 

To lodge with the cattle and not with men. 

But only the wise men knelt and praised, 
And only the shepherds came to see, 

And the rest of the world cared not at all 

For the little Christ in the oxen's stall ; 
And we are angry and amazed 

That such a dull, hard thing should be \ 

How do we keep his birthday now ? 

We ring the bells and we raise the strain, 
We hang up garlands everywhere, 
And bid the tapers twinkle fair, 

And feast and frolic — and then we go 
Back to the same old lives again. 



1 36 A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 



LITTLE CHILDREN, LOVE ONE ANOTHER." 

A little girl, with a happy look, 

Sat slowly reading a ponderous book, 

All bound with silver and edged with gold, 

And its weight was more than the child could hold; 

Yet dearly she loved to ponder it o'er, 

And every day she prized it more, 

For it said — and she looked at her smiling mother — 

It said, " Little children, love one another." 

She thought it was beautiful in the book, 
And the lesson home to her heart she took ; 
She walked on her way with a trusting grace, 
And a dove-like look in her meek young face, 
Which said just as plain as words could say, 
1 'The Holy Bible I must obey; 
So, mamma, I'll be kind to my darling brother, 
For little children must love each other. 

"I'm sorry he's naughty and will not play; 
But Til love him still, for I think the way 
To make him gentle and kind to me 
Will be better shown if I let him see 
I strive to do what I think is right, 
And thus, when I kneel in prayer to-night, 
I will clasp my hands around my brother, 
And say, 'Little children, love one another."' 

The little girl did as her Bible taught, 

And pleasant indeed was the change it wrought, 

For the boy looked up in glad surprise, 

To meet the light of her loving eyes; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 137 



His heart was full, he could not speak, 
But he pressed a kiss on his sister's cheek; 
And God looked down on that happy mother, 
Whose little children loved each other. 



THE FATHER'S HOUSE. 

Somewhere, in that blessed country, 
Whose clime is untainted by sin, 

Where the ransomed of earth are gathered, 
Heaven's beautiful gates within, 

We shall find the spacious building 
Our Savior has gone to prepare, 

With its many, many mansions 
That are held in waiting there. 

But we know it hath foundation 

More firm than the heaven's blue scroll, 

That glorious home which beckons 
Forever the human soul. 

Just where or what the enjoyments 
Prepared for his children may be, 

The Father's infinite wisdom 
Hath hidden in mystery. 

Only this constant assurance 

We bear on earth's turbulent tide, 

That there the hungering spirit 
Shall more than be satisfied. 

Ah, many an hour of darkness, 

When the soul has been wrung with pain, 



138 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Till the world's intense ambitions 
Have sounded their calls in vain, 

By some subtile beam of brightness, 

Dropt down from that home of the blest, 

Has been transformed to a Bethel, 
Where God was manifest. 

And sometimes even to mortals 
A marvelous view has been given, 

Of the white-robed angels going 

And coming, twixt earth and heaven. 

(), the heart would faint and falter, 
As it journeyeth toward the skies, 

Except for these revelations 

That gladden our upturned eyes ; 

These high and holy communings, 
Which hallow the blackness of night, 

And a glimpse of the bright hereafter, 
So dear to our longing sight. 

Away from all sin and sorrow, 

By the River of Life it stands, 
The Father's house, with its glory, 

Unsullied by human hands. 

And each nightfall finds us nearer, 

Or farther and farther away 
From that home, with its many mansions, 

Up in the center of day. 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. 1 39 



SEEDS OF KINDNESS. 

There was never a golden sunbeam 

That fell on a desolate place, 
But left some trace of its presence 

That time could never efface; 
Not a song of ineffable sweetness 

That ravished the listening ear, 
Then slumbers in silence forgotten 

For many and many a year, 

But a word or a tone might awaken 

Its magical power anew, 
Long after the sweet-voiced singer 

Has faded from earthly view; 
Nor a heart was ever so weary, 

Or tainted with sin and despair, 
But a word of tender compassion 

Might find an abiding place there. 

Yet countless thousands are yearning 

For sympathy, kindness and love, 
And souls are groping in darkness 

Without one gleam from above. 
There was never a sunbeam wasted, 

Nor a song that was sung in vain, 
And souls that seem lost in the shadows 

A Savior's love may reclaim. 

Then scatter the sunbeams of kindness, 
Though your deeds may never be known ; 

The harvest will ripen in glory, 
If the seed be faithfully sown ; 



i4o ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And life will close with a blessing, 
And fade into endless day, 

Like the golden hues of the sunbeam, 
That fade in the twilight gray. 



THE BEST BEAUTY. 

I know a little fellow 

Whose face is fair to see, 
But still there's nothing pleasant 

About that face to me, 
For he's rude and cross and selfish 

If he can't have his own way, 
And he's always making trouble, 

I've heard his mother say. 

I know a little fellow 

Whose face is plain to see, 
But that we never think of, 

So kind and brave is he. 
He carries sunshine with him, 

And everybody's glad 
To hear the cheery whistle 

Of the pleasant little lad. 

You see it's not the features 

That others judge us by, 
But what we do, I tell you, 

And what you can't deny. 
The plainest face has beauty, 

If its owner's kind and true, 
And that's the kind of beauty, 

My girl and boy, for you. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 141 



CHRISTMAS TIDE. 

Sing hymns that were sung by the stars of the morn, 
Sing songs of the angels when Jesus was born ! 
Sing the bridal of nations! with chorals of love 
Sing out the war- vulture and sing in the dove, 
Till the hearts of the people keep time in accord, 
And the voice of the world is the voice of the Lord! 
Blow, bugles of battle, the marches of peace, 
East, West, North and South let the long quarrel cease; 
Sing the song of great joy that the angels began, 
Sing of glory to God and of good will to man ! 

Hark ! joining in chorus ! 

The heavens bend o'er us ! 
The dark night is ending and dawn is begun ! 
Rise, hope of the ages, arise like the sun ! 
All speech flow to music, all hearts beat as one ! 



LIFE'S LESSON. 

Time is precious ! happy children, 
Make the most of sunny hours, 

For the snow-king, coming swiftly, 
May despoil thy crown of flowers. 

In the glad to-day be merry, 
On the morrow fate may frown ; 

Even joy. the princely donor, 
Hides a cross beneath his crown. 

Though thy future beams resplendent 
With its wealth of bliss to come, 

Yet as white days we remember 
Those within our childhood's home. 



H2 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



( Earner then the fleeting moments, 
Fetter swift the fading lure, 

With the blessing prized of angels. 
Love that will for time endure. 

Learn ye this ! Life's dearest lesson, 
Ere the frosts blight seasons fair — 

Love may pave a starry pathway 
To the summer " over there.'' 



BOYS' RIGHTS. 

Ladiks and gentlemen, if you will give me your atten- 
tion, I will speak to you a few minutes about boys' rights. 
People seem to think that a boy is only to make himself 
useful. If a shower comes up while the family is at 
church, a boy can just run home through the pouring rain 
and bring half a dozen umbrellas back with him. "Rain," 
they say, "is good for boys — it makes them grow." But 
let that same boy suggest on Tuesday, if it happens to be 
a rainy day, that he would like to go fishing, and at once 
he hears from all sides, '•' O, no; you will catch your death- 
cold. Stay at home and work in the garden ! " Now, 
what I want to know is : Why it isn't just as dangerous for 
a boy to get soaking wet working in the garden on a rainy 
da}' as to go fishing? 

I think boys are entitled to their share of room in the 
Avorld, but they don't get it. If a boy happens to get a 
good place where he can see the parade, some big man 
comes along and crowds him out of it. If he spends his 
last cent for a good whistle, and thinks he is going to have 
a fine time with it, he wakes up some morning and finds 
it missing, "because it makes so much noise no one could 
endure it." Now I'd like to have a fiddle and a drum and 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 143 



an accordeon and a bagpipe, and invite the boys to come 
and have a grand concert once in a while, but I'd get sent 
out in the street quick if I should try it once. 

But I shall be a man some day, and I'll make things 
right. Boys will have a good time then, I tell you. It 
seems as though I should never grow up — but I shall, and 
then I'm going to be the biggest kind of an advocate for 
boys' rights. — Young Folks 7 Speaker: Nat. School of El. 
and Or., Philadelphia. 



SUMMER. 

Summer, with a royal splendor 
Robing now the joyous earth, 

Lures in vain the loyal spirit, 
Musing of its higher birth ; 

More it sighs for bliss eternal 
In this hour of brightest mirth. 

Not the world, with all its treasure, 
Can our growing hope fulfill; 

Not the best we can accomplish 
Worketh half the good we will; 

Human love, its largest granting, 
Only leaves us craving still. 

So thou teachest, Heavenly Father, 
Where alone our life can be ; 

Faintly thus our glorious birthright 
Through this earthly veil we see, 

And in spirit struggle upward 
To our home and rest with thee. 

So thou drawest, blessed Savior, 
All thy members evermore 



144 A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 



To that everlasting kingdom, 
Whither thou art gone before ; 

We, in heart and mind ascending, 
Learn its glories at the door. 



OUR HEROES. 

Here's a hand to the boy who has courage 

To do what he knows to be right ; 
When he falls in the way of temptation 

He has a hard battle to fight. 
Who strives against self and his comrades 

Will find a most powerful foe ; 
All honor to him if he conquers, 

A cheer for the boy who says, " No ! " 

There's many a battle fought daily 

The world knows nothing about ; 
There's many a brave little soldier 

Whose strength puts a legion to rout. 
And he who fights single-handed 

Is more of a hero, I say, 
Than he who leads soldiers to battle, 

And conquers arms in the fray. 

Be steadfast, my boy, when you're tempted 

To do what you know is not right ; 
Stand firm by the colors of manhood, 

And you will overcome in the fight. 
"The right! " be your battle-cry ever, 

In waging the warfare of life ; 
And God, who knows who are the heroes, 

Will give you strength for the strife. 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. 1 45 



NOBLE WORDS. 

Whene'er a noble deed is wrought, 
Whene'er is spoke a noble thought, 

Our hearts, in glad surprise, 

To higher levels rise. 

The tidal wave of deeper souls 
Into our inmost being rolls, 

And lifts us unawares 

Out of all meaner cares. 

Honor to those whose words and deeds 
Thus help us in our daily needs, 

And by their overflow 

Raise us from what is low ! 

Longfellow'. 



LIFE IS WHAT WE MAKE IT. 

Let's oftener talk of noble deeds, 

And rarer of the bad ones, 
And sing about our happy days, 

And not about the sad ones. 
We were not made to fret and sigh, 

And when grief sleeps to wake it; 
Bright happiness is standing by — 

This life is what we make it. 

Let's find the sunny side of men, 

Or be believers in it ; 
A light there is in every soul 

That takes the pains to win it. 



146 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Oh ! there's a slumbering good in all, 

And we perchance may wake it ; 
Our hands contain the magic wand — 

This life is what we make it. 

Then here's to those whose loving hearts 

Shed light and joy about them ! 
Thanks be to them for countless gems 

We ne'er had known without them. 
Oh ! this should be a happy world 

To all who may partake it; 
The fault's our own if it is not — 

This life is what we make it. 

Boston Transcript. 



WHEN SANTA CLAUS COMES. 

A GOOD time is coming ; I wish it were here ! — 
The very best time in the whole of the year ; 
I'm counting each day, on my fingers and thumbs, 
The weeks that must pass before Santa Claus comes. 

Good-by for a while, then, to lessons and school; 
We can laugh, talk, and sing, without "breaking the rule;" 
No troublesome spelling, nor writing, nor sums ; 
There's nothing but play-time when Santa Claus comes. 

I suppose I shall have a new dolly, of course — 

My last one was killed by a fall from her horse ; 

And for Harry and Jack there'll be trumpets and drums, 

To deafen us all with, when Santa Claus comes. 

I'll hang up my stocking to hold what he brings ; 
I hope he will fill it with lots of nice things ; 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 147 



He must know how dearly I love sugar-plums ; 
Td like a big box full when Santa Claus comes. 

Then when the first snow-flakes begin to come down, 
And the wind whistles sharp, and the branches are brown, 
I'll not mind the cold, though my fingers it numbs, 
For it brings the time nearer when Santa Claus comes. 

Elizabeth Sill. 



DOT LAMBS VOT MARY HAF GOT. 

Mary haf got a leetle lambs already, 
Dose vool vas vite like shnow ; 
Und every times dot Mary did vend oud, 
Dot lambs vent also oud vid Mary. 

Dot lambs dit follow Mary von day of her school-house, 
Vich vas obbosition to der rules of der school-master. 
Also, vich it dit cause dose schillen to schmile out loud 
Ven dey did saw dose lambs on der insides of der school- 
house. 

Und zo dot school-master did kick dot lambs quick oud, 
Likewise, dot lambs dit loaf around on der outsides, 
Und did shoo der flies mit his tail off patiently aboud 
Until Mary did come also from dot school-house oud. 

Und den dot lambs did run right away quick to Mary, 
Und dit make his het on Mary's arms. 
Like he would said, " I dond vos schkared, 
Mary vould keep from droubbles ena how." 

" Vot vos der reason about it, of dot lambs und Mary?" 
Dose schillen did ask it, dot school-master ; 



1 48 A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 



"Veil, doand you know it, dot Mary lov dose lambs 

already ? " 
Dot school-master did zaid. 

MORAL. 

Und zo, also, dot moral vas, 
Boud Mary's lamb's relations; 
Of you lofe dose like she lofe dose, 
Dot lambs vas oonder obligations. 



ONLY A PIN. 

A TALE WITH A POINT. 

Only a pin — yet it calmly lay 
On the carpeted floor in the light of day, 
And shone serene and clear and bright, 
Reflecting back the noonday's light. 

Only a boy — bat he saw that pin, 
And his face assumed a fiendish grin ; 
And he slowly stooped with look intent, 
Till both he and the pin alike were bent. 

Only a chair — yet upon its seat 
That well bent pin found safe retreat; 
Nor could the keenest eye discern 
That heavenward its point did turn. 

Only a man — but he chanced to drop 
Upon that chair, when — bang ! whiz ! pop ! 
Like the cork from a bottle of champagne 
He bounded up from that chair again. 

Only a yell — but an honest one ; 
It lacked the remotest idea of fun ; 



A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 149 



And man, and boy, and pin, and chair 
In close communion mingled there. 

Only the pin — out of all the four — 

Alone no traces of damage bore; 

The man was mad, and dreadfully swore, 

And he lathered that boy behind and before ; 

The chair lay smashed upon the floor, 

Its seat was not hurt — but the boy's was sore. 



IN SCHOOL. 

Fair little maidens all in a row, 
Learning the things that big folks know — 
Learning to read and write and spell, 
Finding out how to do all things well, 
But learning most surely, as children should, 
That first great lesson — how to be good. 

Little boys standing up sturdy and straight, 
Longing, like men, to be tall and great; 
Learning hard lessons from day to day, 
For work is pleasure as well as play, 
But learning most surely, as all boys can, 
The way of becoming a true, good man. 

A fond teacher walking among them all, 
Among the brave boys and the maidens small. 
Teaching the lesson the school books show — 
The wonderful things that the wise men know 
But teaching more sweetly than I can tell, 
That great, grave lesson — how to live well. 

And this the sum of the day in school : 
Little folks learning the golden rule, 



1 50 A CME DEC LAMA TION B O OK. 



Learning to live and learning to die, 
Learning of earth and the beautitul sky, 
And learning that if we will do our best, 
We never need trouble — God guides the rest. 
Katie Moore, in The Fountain. 



THE WILLIAM GOAT. 

Mary had a William Goat, 

And he was black as jet; 
He followed Mary 'round all day, 

And liked her, you just bet! 

He went with her to school one day, 

The teacher kicked him out ; 
It made the children grin, you know, 

To have the goat about. 

But though old Whackem kicked him out, 

Yet still he lingered near ; 
And waited just outside the door 

Till Whackem did appear. 

And William ran to meet the man, 

He ran his level best; 
And met him just behind, you know, 

Down just below the vest. 

Old Whackem turned a somersault ; 

The goat stood on his head ; 
And Mary laughed herself so sick, 

She had to go to bed. 

Philadelphia Times. 



A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 15 1 



AUNT TABITHA. 

Whatever I do and whatever I say, 
Aunt Tabitha tells me it isn't the way; 
When she was a girl (forty summers ago) 
Aunt Tabitha tells me they never did so. 

Dear aunt ! If I only would take her advice ! 
But I like my own way, and I find it so nice ! 
And besides, I forget half the things I am told ; 
But they all will come back to me— when I am old. 

If a youth passes by, it may happen, no doubt, 
He may chance to look in as I chance to look out ; 
She would never endure an impertinent stare — 
It is horrid, she says, and I mustn't sit there. 

A walk in the moonlight has pleasures, I own, 
But it isn't quite safe to be walking alone ; 
So I take a lad's arm — just for safety, you know — 
But Aunt Tabitha tells me they didn't do so. 

How wicked we are, and how good they were then ! 
They kept at arm's length those detestable men; 
What an era of virtue she lived in ! — But stay — 
Were the men all such rogues in Aunt Tabitha' s day ? 

If the men were so wicked, I'll ask my papa 
How he dared to propose to my darling mamma : 
Was he like the rest of them ? Goodness ! Who knows ? 
And what shall I say, if a wretch should propose ? 

I am thinking if Aunt knew so little of sin, 
"What a wonder Aunt Tabitha' s aunt must have been ! 



52 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And her grand-aunt — it scares me — how shockingly sad 
That we girls of to-day are so frightfully bad ? 

A martyr will save us, and nothing else can , 

Let me perish — to rescue some wretched young man ! 

Though when to the altar a victim I go, 

Aunt Tabitha '11 tell me she never did so ! 



TO THE BOYS 

Boys, when you are asked to drink, 

Always say no ; 

Do not mind what others think, 

Always say no; 

Cast from you all liquor vile ; 

Soul and body 'twill defile ; 

And to those who would beguile, 

Always say no. 

Haunt no place of ill-repute , 

Always keep away ; 
Though companions jeer and hoot, 

Always keep away; 
For the right be strong to strive , 
Character will long survive , 
And from all that would deprive, 

Ever keep away. 

Truth is might, and must prevail ; 

Always speak the truth ; 
It will stand the test, nor fail; 

Always speak the truth ; 
Falsehood ever causes blame, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 153 



And will lead to darkest shame — 
Who would bear a liar's name ? 

Always speak the truth. 

Should misfortune on you frown, 

Always presevere. 
Don't despair or be cast down, 

Always persevere. 
On this truth you may depend ; 
Richer blessing will attend, 
And will comfort in the end, 

If you persevere. 

James B. Leivis. 



A CLUSTER OF NEVERS. 

Never utter a word of slang, 
Never shut the door with a bang. 

Never say once that you " don't care," 
Never exaggerate, never swear. 

Never lose your temper much, 
Never a glass of liquor touch. 

Never wickedly play the spy, 
Never, O, never, tell a lie ! 

Never your parents disobey, 
Never neglect at night to pray. 

Remember these maxims 

Through all the day, 
And you will be happy 

At work or at play. 



154 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK 



A FISHING PARSON. 

In a quiet village, far away, 

The pulpit was vacant many a day. 

Candidates came from far and near, 
Every Sabbath for nearly a year. 

Some were too awkward ; some preached with ease ; 
But no one was able them all to please. 

At length there came from a distant place 
A man of unusual power and grace. 

His frame was strong and his eye was clear, 
And all were pleased who came to hear. 

''This is our man! " said the elders all, 
And old and young united to call. 

The call was accepted, and early in May 

The new parson came, with his household, to stay. 

But after the toil of settling down 

In his pleasant home in the little town, 

The parson was one day seen to stroll 
Across the street with basket and pole, 

And take his way, o'er field and brake, 
To a rippling stream that entered the lake 

Just below the town. " What does it mean ? " 
Asked the gossips and all who had seen. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 155 



" A fishing parson ! " exclaimed the men, 
' ' How could we so deceived have been ? " 

The spinsters said : " 'Twas a shame and sin — 
A parson to be engaged in 

" Such worldly sports! " 'Twas late in the day 
When the parson took his homeward way, 

With well-filled basket, and better still, 
A glowing cheek and a healthful thrill, 

Caused by the blood that flowed through his veins 
As torrents flow after summer rains. 

Some said, with boldness, they never more 
Could respect and love him as before. 

" A fishing parson! Who ever heard 
Of a fishing man preaching the Word ? " 

Thus spake the elders and deacons and all, 
And before them at once the parson they call. 

"A painful duty," the eldest said, 

" Devolves upon us," and he shook his head 

In a serious way. " Never before, 
For eight and seventy years or more, 

" Have we as a church been called upon 
To reprove our pastor for what he has done. 

' ' You went a fishing the other day ! 
We think it unseemly in every way. 



1 56 A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK. 



"'Twill injure the cause with the young and the gay 
' Tis scandalous ! What have you to say ? " 

A smile came over the parson's face, 

As he rose to respond with becoming grace. 

He spake of Peter and his brethren three, 
Who once were fishermen on Galilee. 

1 ' These were the men that the Master chose 
To carry His gospel to friends and foes." 

He spake of Bethune, and he spake of Todd — 
" Fishing parsons ! " but men of God. 

1 ' Fishing parsons ! aye ; but better men 
To preach the Word and wield the pen 

' ' The church has not known for many a day ; 
They loved to preach, they loved to pray. 

' ' Nor their Lord the less because as well 
They loved the mountain stream and dell. 

"And as for myself, I can boldly say 
I preach the better, from day to day, 

"For the strength I gain in my walks about, 
While casting my fly for the speckled trout. 

"And when in the forest, alone, oppressed, 
God speaks to me, and I am blest." 

No more was said, but as time rolled on 
The pews in the church filled, one by one. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 157 



And as never before, from far and near, 
The people flocked to the church to hear 

" The fishing parson!" for so he was known 
By boys and girls and men full-grown. 

And at length the meeting-house, which before 
Had held them all, with room for more, 

Became so crowded that 'ere the fall 
An effort was set on foot by all 

To build a new house, with ample room 
For all the people who wished to come. 

And though the years rolled swiftly by 
The fire still glowed in the parson's eye; 

And he often said, in his pleasant way, 
As he labored on from day to day, 

That his power to work with a steady plod 
Was due to his love of the basket and rod. 

The parson lived long, and rejoiced to think 
Of the souls that were saved from Ruin's brink. 

True fisher of men! he had tried to be — 
As faithful as those of Galilee. 

'Twas at eighty and three, and preaching still, 
And serving his Master with heart and will, 

That the welcome summons at last was sent 
To call him home from banishment. 



58 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



And this they cut on his tombstone deep, 
When he at last had "fallen on sleep:" 

"Here lieth the fishing parson!'' and then, 
ii His Master made hi?n a fisher of men." 

Jai?ies H. JToadley, in N. Y. Independent. 



MY FATHER'S BIRTHDAY. 

Dear Pa, this is your birthday, 

And I would wish you joy 
Which earthly care and earthly strife 

Shall dim not or destroy ; 
For Time is creeping on apace, 

His touch is on your hair, 
And glancing at your smooth, fair brow, 

He's left his traces there. 

Your step is not so quick and firm, 

And not so bright your eye, 
As in the happy days of youth, 

Alas ! so long gone by. 
The eastern sky no longer glows 

With morning's cloudless light, 
But shadows on the western plain 

Are lengthening into night. 

And there is one, too, at your side, 

The fair bride of your youth — 
The Mother whom our hearts enshrine 

With virtue, love and truth. 
On her the same relentless hand, 

Though lightly, hath been laid; 
The cheek, the hair, the sunny eyes, 

Begin to dim and fade. 



A CME DECLAMA TION BOOK. 1 59 



But there's a twilight beauty yet 

In each beloved face, 
That's dearer in its tenderness 

Than any youthful grace. 
The lines the mighty Sculptor hath 

Engraved in wisdom there, 
Be they by sorrow's chisel wrought, 

Or thought, or pain, or care, 

Are deep with holy meaning fraught, 

With sacrifice and love — 
Such love as links frail mortal man 

With angels bright above ! 
And ev'ry furrow, ev'ry trace, 

But makes you dearer far 
To us whose lives that love hath led 

As Magi's heav'n-lit star. 

Then bless you, Pa ! God bless you ! 

And bless our Mother, too ; 
And many, oh ! many a birthday 

May the future bring to you ; 
And may each one be brighter, 

More blessed than the last, 
And o'er their chastened radiance 

No low'ring cloud be cast. 

We know prayer is the golden key 

God's treasures to unlock ; 
With it all joys for you I'll claim, 

And rest beneath the " Rock," 
Till safe within the jasper gates 

He welcomes you, His own, 
Where Time is not, and weary years 

And birthdays are unknown. 



160 A CME DECLAMA TION B O OK 



LET US TRY TO BE HAPPY. 

Let us try to be happy i 

We may if we will 
Find some pleasure in life 

To o'erbalance the ill. 
There was never an evil, 

If well understood, 
But what, rightly managed, 

Would turn to a good. 

If we were but as ready 

To look to the light 
As we are to sit moping 

Because it is night, 
We should own it a truth, 

Both in word and in deed, 
They who try to be happy 

Are sure to succeed. 



AUNT NANCY ON THE REVISED NEW 
TESTAMENT. 

And this is the new New Testament, 

And 'tis come in the sweet of the year, 
When the fields are shining in cloth of gold, 

And the birds are singing so clear; 
And over and into the grand old text, 

Reverent and thoughtful men, 
Through many a summer and winter past, 

Have been peering with book and pen, 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 161 



Till they've straightened the moods and tenses out, 

And dropped each obsolete phrase, 
And softened the strong, old-fashioned words 

To our daintier modern ways ; 
Collated the ancient manuscripts, 

Particle, word, and line, 
And faithfully done their very best 

To improve the Book Divine. 

1 haven't a doubt they have meant it well, 

But it is not clear to me 
That we needed the trouble it was to them, 

On either side of the sea. 
I cannot help it, a thought that comes — 

You know I am old and plain — 
But it seems like touching the ark of God, 

And the touch to my heart is pain. 

For ten years past, and for five times ten 

At the back of that, my dear, 
I've made and mended and toiled and saved, 

With my Bible ever near. 
Sometimes it was only a verse at morn 

That lifted me up from care, 
Like the springing wings of a sweet-voiced lark 

Cleaving the golden air. 

And sometimes of Sunday afternoons 

'Twas a chapter rich and long 
That came to my heart in its weary hour, 

With the lilt of a triumph song. 
I studied the precious words, my dear, 

When a child at my mother's knee, 
And I tell you the Bible I've always had 

Is a good enough book for me. 



1 62 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



I may be stubborn and out of date, 

But my hair is white as snow, 
And I love the things I learned to love 

In the beautiful long ago. 
I cannot be changing at my time, 

'Twould be losing a part of myself; 
You may lay the new New Testament 

Away on the upper shelf. 

1 cling to the one my good man read 

In our fireside prayers at night ; 
To the one my little children lisped, 

Ere they faded out of my sight. 
I shall gather my dear ones close again 

Where the many mansions be, 
And till then the Bible I've always had 

Is a good enough book for me. 

Margaret E. Sangster, in Harper's Bazar. 



THE PRICE OF A DRINK. 

''Five cents a glass! " Does any one think 
That that is really the price of a drink ? 
"Five cents a glass," I hear you say; 
" Why, that isn't very much to pay." 
Ah, no, indeed; 'tis a very small sum 
You are passing over 'twixt ringer and thumb; 
And if that were all that you gave away, 
It wouldn't be very much to pay. 

The price of a drink ! Let him decide 
Who has lost his courage and lost his pride, 
And lies a groveling heap of clay, 
Not far removed from a beast, to-day. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 163 



The price of a drink ! Let that one tell 
Who sleeps to-night in a murderer's cell, 
And feels within him the fires of hell. 
Honor and virtue, love and truth, 
All the glory and pride of youth, 
Hopes of manhood, the wreath of fame, 
High endeavor and noble aim, 
These are the treasures thrown away 
As the price of drink, from day to day. 

"Five cents a glass ! " How Satan laughed, 
As over the bar the young man quaffed 
The beaded liquor; for the demon knew 
The terrible work that drink would do; 
And ere the morning the victim lay 
With his life-blood swiftly ebbing away; 
And that was the price he paid, alas ! 
For the pleasure of taking a social glass. 

The price of a drink ! If you want to know 
What some are willing to pay for it, go 
Through that wretched tenement over there, 
With dingy windows and broken stair, 
Where foul disease, like a vampire, crawls 
With outstretched wings o'er the moldy walls. 
There poverty dwells with her hungry brood, 
Wild-eyed as demons for lack of food; 
There shame, in a corner, crouches low ; 
There violence deals its cruel blow ; 
And innocent ones are thus accursed 
To pay the price of another's thirst. 

"Five cents a glass ! " Oh, if that were all, 
The sacrifice would, indeed, be small ! 
But the money's worth is the least amount 
We pay ; and whoever will keep account 



1 64 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK, 



Will learn the terrible waste and blight 
That follows the ruinous appetite. 
"Five cents a glass ! " Does any one think 
That that is really the price of a drink ? 

Josephine Pollard, in N. O. Christian Advocate. 

THE IMPOSSIBLE. 

Man cannot draw water from an empty well, 
Or trace the stories that gossips tell, 
Or gather the sounds of a pealing bell. 

Man never can stop the billow's roar, 

Nor chain the winds till they blow no more, 

Nor drive true love from a maiden's door. 

Man cannot o'ertake a fleeting lie, 
Change his wheat to a field of rye, 
Or call back years that have long gone by. 

Man never can bribe old Father Time, 

Gain the height of a peak that he cannot climb, 

Or trust the hand that hath done a crime. 

Man cannot a cruel word recall, 
Fetter a thought, be it great or small, 
Or honey extract from a drop of gall. 

Man never can backward turn the tide, 
Or count the stars that are scattered wide, 
Or find in a fool a trusty guide. 

Man cannot reap fruit from worthless seed, 

Rely for strength on a broken reed, 

Or gain a heart he hath caused to bleed. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 165 



Man never can hope true peace to win, 
Pleasure without and joy within, 
Living a thoughtless life of sin. 



A SANITARY REVISION OF " THE OLD OAKEN 
BUCKET." 

With what anguish of mind I remember my childhood, 

Recalled in the light of a knowledge since gained : 
The malarious farm, the wet, fungus-grown wildwood, 

The chills then contracted that since have remained ; 
The scum-covered duck-pond, the pig-sty close by it, 

The ditch where the sour-smelling house-drainage fell ; 
The damp, shaded dwelling, the foul barn-yard nigh it — 

But worse than all else was that terrible well, 
And the old oaken bucket, the mould-crusted bucket, 

The moss-covered bucket, that hung in the well. 

Just think of it ! Moss on the vessel that lifted 

The water I drank in the days called to mind, 
Ere I knew what professors and scientists gifted 

In the water of wells by analysis find. 
The rotting wood-fibre, the oxide of iron, 

The algae, the frog of unusual size, 
The water — impure as the verse? of Byron — 

Are things I remember with tears in my eyes. 

And to tell the sad truth — though I shudder to think it — 

I considered that water uncommonly clear, 
And often at noon, when I went there to drink it, 

I enjoyed it as much as I now enjoy beer. 
How ardent I seized it with hands that were grimy ! 

And quick to the mud-covered bottom it fell; 
Then soon, with its nitrates and nitrites, and slimy 

With matter organic, it rose from the well 



1 66 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



Oh ! had I but realized, in time to avoid them, 

The dangers that lurked in that pestilent draught, 
I'd have tested for organic germs and destroyed them 

With potassic permanganate ere I had quaffed ; 
Or perchance I'd have boiled it, and afterwards strained it 

Through filters of charcoal and gravel combined, 
Or, after distilling, condensed and regained it 

In potable form, with its filth left behind. 

How little I knew of the dread typhoid fever 

Which lurked in the water I ventured to drink ! 
But since I've become a devoted believer 

In the teachings of science, I shudder to think. 
And now, far removed from the scenes I'm describing, 

The story for warning to others I tell, 
As memory reverts to my youthful imbibing, 

And I gag at the thought of that horrible well, 
And the old oaken bucket, the fungus-grown bucket — 

In fact, the slop-bucket — that hung in the well. 

J. C. Baylcs. 



THOUGHTS ON BEAUTY. 

Sad thought it is, and yet most true, that all that's fair must 

fade, 
The lovely face, the form of grace, and flower in mead and 

glade; 
The beaming eye, and rosy cheek, and lip of ruby hue 
Will ere long wither, fade, and die, and pass away from 

view. 

And though so fleeting and so frail, yet beauty's office here 
Is to instruct the willing mind, the saddened heart to cheer- 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 167 



For thorns are in our pathway strewn, and some can hardly 

bear 
The ills of life that fall to them, yet which we all must share. 

But beauty's power is owned by all a never-failing balm, 
Which can the coldest bosom move, the troubled spirit calm; 
The subtle spell which it exerts the spirits all enthrall ; 
Its sovereign sway was ne'er denied, it rules and governs 
all. 

It is the artist's mission high the fleeting charms to trace, 
Of nature's ever-changing hues and varying forms of grace, 
That here in kindness from above to cheer us on our way, 
Are sent to draw us from this world to one of endless day. 

In that bright world all things are fair and bathed in beauty's 

sheen, 
Where crystal streamlets smoothly glide through pastures 

ever green ; 
Where sorrow never more may come, and tears wiped from 

all eyes, 
In that pure world, that glorious world, eternal in the skies. 

William R. Lawrence. 



THE RAINBOW. 

I sometimes have thought in my loneliest hours, 
That lie on my heart like the dew on the flowers, 
Of a ramble I took one bright afternoon, 
When my heart was as light as a blossom in June. 
The green earth was moist with the late fallen showers, 
The breeze fluttered down and blew open the flowers, 
While a single white cloua in its haven of rest, 
On the white wings of peace floated off in the west. 



i68 ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 



As I threw back my tresses to catch the cool breeze 
That scattered the rain-drops and dimpled the seas, 
Far up the blue sky a fair rainbow unrolled 
Its soft-tinted pinions of purple and gold ; 
'Twas born in a moment, yet, quick as its birth, 
It had stretched to the uttermost ends of the earth, 
And fair as an angel it floated all free, 
With a wing on the earth and a wing on the sea. 

How calm was the ocean, how gentle its swell ! 

Like a woman's soft bosom it rose and it fell, 

While its light, sparkling waves, stealing laughingly o'er, 

When they saw the fair rainbow knelt down to the shore : 

No sweet hymn ascended, no murmur of prayer, 

Yet I felt that the spirit of worship was there, 

And bent my young head in devotion and love, 

'Neath the form of the angels that floated above. 

How wide was the sweep of its beautiful wings ! 
How boundless its circle ! how radiant its rings ! 
If I looked on the sky, 'twas suspended in air, 
If I looked on the ocean, the rainbow was there; 
Thus forming a girdle as brilliant and whole 
As the girdle of suns that the night skies unroll ; 
Like the wing of the deity, calmly unfurled, 
It bent from the cloud and encircled the world. 

There are moments, I think, when the spirit receives 
Whole volumes of thought on its unwritten leaves; 
W T hen the folds of the heart in a moment unclose, 
Like the innermost leaves from the heart of the rose ; 
And thus, when the rainbow had passed from the sky, 
The thoughts it awoke were^ too deep to pass by ; 
It left my full soul like the wing of a dove, 
Fluttering with pleasure and fluttering with love. 



ACME DECLAMATION BOOK. 169 



I know that each moment of rapture or pain 
But shortens the links in life's mystical chain; 
I know that my form, like the bow of the wave, 
Must pass from the earth and lie cold in the grave ; 
Yet O ! when death's shadows my bosom uncloud, 
When I shrink from the thought of the coffin and shroud, 
May hope, like the rainbow, my spirit unfold 
In her beautiful pinions of purple and gold ! 

Mrs. Amelia B, Welby, of St. Louis, Mo. 



FOR THE DISCOURAGED FARMER. 

The summer winds is sniffin' round the bloomin' locus' 

trees ; 
And the clover in the pastur' is a big day for the bees, 
And they ben a-swiggin' honey, above-board and on the sly, 
Till they stutter in their buzzin', and stagger as they fly. 

The nicker on the fence rails 'pears to jest spit on his 

wings 
And roll up his feathers, by the sassy way he sings; 
And the hoss-fly is a-whettin' up his fore-legs fer biz, 
And the mare is a-switchin' all of her tail they is. 

You can hear the blackbirds jawin' as they follow up the 

plow — 
Oh ! they're bound to get their breakfast and they're not a 

carin' how ; 
So they quarrel in the furries, and they quarrel on the 

wing — 
But they're peacabler in pot-pies than any other thing. 

And it's when I git my shot-gun drawed up in stiddy rest, 
She's as full of triberlation as a yaller-jacket's nest, 



1 70 A CME DECLA MA TION BOOK 



And a few shots 'fore dinner, when the sun's a shinin' right, 
Seems to kind o' sort o' sharpen up a feller's appetite. 

They's been a heap o' rain, but the sun's out to-day, 

And the clouds of the wet spell is all cleared away, 

And the woods is all the greener, and the grass is greener 

still ; 
It may rain agin to-morrow, but I don't think it will. 

Some say the crops is ruined, and the corn's drownded out, 
And prophesy the wheat will be a failure without doubt ; 
But the kind Providence that has never failed us yet 
Will be on hand oncet more at the 'leventh hour, I bet! 

Does the medder-lark complain, as he swims high and dry, 
Through the waves of the wind and the blue of the sky ? 
Does the quail sit up and whistle in a disappointed way ? 
Er hang his head in silence and sorrow all the day? 

Is the chipmunk's health a-failhr ? Does he walk, or does 

he run ? 
Don't the buzzards ooze around up there jest like they alius 

done? 
Is they anything the matter with the rooster's lungs or 

voice ? 
Ort a mortal be complainin' when dumb animals rejoice ? 

Then let us, one and all, be contented with our lot, 
The June is here this morning, and the sun is shining hot. 
Oh ! let us fill our hearts up with the glory of the day, 
And banish every doubt and care and sorrow far away ? 

Whatever be our station, with Providence for guide, 
Such circumstances ort to make us satisfied : 



A CME DEC LAMA TION BOOK. 171 



For the world is full of roses, and the roses full of dew, 
And the dew is full of heavenly love that drips for me and 
you. 

Benj. F. Johnson. 



AT THE LAST. 

Come once, just once, dear love, when I am dead — 
Ah, God ! I would it were this hour, to-night— 

And look your last upon the frozen face 
That was to you a summer's brief delight. 

The silent lips will not entreat you then, 

Nor the eyes vex you with unwelcome tears; 

The low, sad voice will utter no complaint, 
Nor the heart tremble with its restless fears. 

I shall be still — you will forgive me then 
For all that I have been, or failed to be. 

Say, as you look, ' ' Poor heart, she loved me well, 
No other love will be so true to me." 

Then bend and kiss the lips that will not speak — 
One little kiss for all the dear, dead days — 

Say once, "God rest her soul!" then go in peace, 
No haunting ghost shall meet you in your ways. 

Louise Chandler Moulton. 



INDEX. 



Page 
A Sanitary Revision of " The Old Oaken Bucket," 5 v., 44 /., 165 

A Little Boy's Troubles, 5 v., 40 /., 7 

A Woman's Question, 5 v., 20 I. (for a girl), 14 

A Mother's Care, 5 ?'., 35 /. (for a young lady), 15 

A Sermon in Rhyme, 7 v., 42 /., 27 

Ambitious, 4 v., 16 /. (for a boy or girl), 60 

A Smart Boy, 5 z\, 20 /. {for a little boy), 76 

A Little Study in Anatomy, 1 v., 36 / 82 

A Strike, 3 v. ,51 I. (for a young lady), 84 

An Apology for Flirtation, 8 v., 32 /. (for a young lady), . 87 

Another Day, 7 v., 42 /. (for a young lady), 90 

After Christmas, 12 v., 48 /., 92 

A Place for Every Man and Every Man in His Place, 7 v., 

28/., . . 97 

A Song, 8 v., 2,2 I., 102 

An Address of Welcome, 1 v., 9 /. (for a little girl), , , ,114 

A Resolve, 1 v., 5 /. (for a little boy), 121 

A Good Little Boy, 2 v., 8 /. (for a little boy), . . .130 

Aunt Tabitha, 8 v., 32 /. (for a girl), 151 

A Cluster of Nevers, 6 v., 14 /., 153 

A Fishing Parson, 49 v., 98 /., 154 

Aunt Nancy on the Revised New Testament, 7 v., 56 /., . . 160 

At the Last, 4 v., 16 /., . 171 

Be Careful What You Say, 4 v., 32 /., 20 

Be First, 6 v., 24 /., ". .28 

Be Kind, 2 v., 18 /., 31 

Babes in the Wood, 2 v., 66 /., 36 

Be Merry While You May 4 v., 32 /.,... 103 

Boys' Fights, 2 v., 30 /. (for a boy), -42 

Calling, 6 v., 24 /. (for a little girl), 96 

Christmas Bells, 4 v., 16 /., 128 

Christmas Tree, 4 v., 28 /. (for three children ), 131 

Christmas Song, 4 v., 24 /., 134 

172 



INDEX. 173 



Pagb 

Christmas Carol, 3 v., 18 /., 135 

Christmas Tide, 1 v., 15 /. 141 

Dot Lambs Vot Mary Haf Got, 5 v., 20 /., 147 

English Sovereigns, 2 v., 24 /., 86 

For a Very Little Boy, 1 v., 8 /., 73 

Face to Face, 1 v., 12 /. (ybr a young lady), 101 

For the Discouraged Farmer, 169 

" Give us a Call," 4 v., 40 /., 11 

Grandma, 17 z/., 68 /., 61 

Golden Keys, 9 v., 18 /. (/#r a girl or boy), 71 

Good-By, 2 z/., 8 /. {for a child), 74 

Grandpa's Soliloquy, 12 v., 48 /. {for a young man), .... 106 
Grandma Al'a's Does, 4 v., 32 /. (/<?r a Utile girl), .... 108 

Geometric Figures, 12 v., 48 /. {for ten boys), 119 

His Riches, 3 v., 24 /., 9 

Hail the New Year, 3 v., 12 /., 20 

Husband and Wife, 8 v., 64 /., . . 67 

Hope On, 4 z'., 28 /., 85 

How He'd Paint It, 2 v., 8 /. {for a little child), 101 

Husband Wanted, 4 v., 52 /. (for a young lady), 117 

He Leadeth Me, 7 v., 21 /., 132 

His Birthday, 2 z'., 16 /., 133 

I'll Be a Man, 3 v., 12 /. {for a little boy), 10 

I've Dot a Man to Sign the Pledge, 6 v., 24 /. {for a little 

girl), 13 

If I Were You, 7 v., 28 /., 17 

I Wonder, 4 v., 16 /., 24 

I Love Thee, Life, 4 v., 20 l. r 6^ 

I'll Put It Off, 3 v., 12 /., 82 

Is There Any By and By ? 7 z/., 28 /., 109 

I'm Very Young, 2 z\, 8 /., 128 

In School, 4 v., 24 /., 149 

Kindness, 3 v., 12 I., . . . 33 

Little Housekeepers, 6 v., 24 /. {for several little girls), . 24 

Legend of the Northland, 20 v., 80 /., 40 

Little Girl's Speech, 3 v., 14 /., 43 

Little Midget, 2 v., 8 /. {for a very little girl), 93 

Little By Little, 2 v., 16 /., 100 

Little Children Love One Another, 4 v., 32 /., 136 

Life's Lesson, 5 v., 20 /., 141 

Life Is What We Make It, 3 v., 24 /., 145 

Let Us Try To Be Happy, 2 v., 16 /., 160 

Mariar In Heaven, 6 z^.,48 /., 22 



174 INDEX. 



Page 
Motion Song, 7 v., 28 /. {for several little children), ... 30 

Minnie's Calculations, 3 v., 24 /., 66 

Mother Goose Corrected, S <y.,6o /. {for two boys and four 

girls), 69 

My Friend and I, 5 v., 20 /., 88 

Mind Cure, 4 v., 16 /., 9 8 

Maud Muller, 19 r., 38 /., 104 

Mother's Fool, 7 z\, 48 /., 129 

My Father's Birthday, 7 v., 56 /., i 5 8 

Noble Words, 3 v., 12 /., .... r ^g 

Nature, 5 z\, 20 /., 83 

Our Flag, 5 z-., 20 /. {for five children), 19 

Our Flag, 8 v., 32 /., 64 

Old Saws in Rhyme, 14 v., 28 /., 72 

( )ld Sayings, 6 v., 24 /., 127 

( )ur Heroes, 3 v., 24 /., 144 

( )nlv a Pin, 6 v., 26 /., 148 

Quiet Ways Are Best, 2 v., 40 /., . 99 

Red, White, and Blue, 4 v., 36 /. (for three girls and one 

boy), . ■ 38 

Rhyme of Our Presidents, 19 Z'., 95 /., .... 55 

Rhyming of Our Presidents, 1 v., 20 /., 77 

Rhvmed Proverbs, 26 v., 52 /., 94 

Strikes. 2 v., 18 /.,... . 18 

Shan't and Won't, 5 z'., 20 /., 21 

Speech for a Six- Year-Old, 3 v., 12 /., 46 

She Would Have Chewing Gum, 4 v., 56 /., . . • no 

Spring, 8z-., 40 /. {for five little girls), 125 

Society and Solitude, 6 v., 24 /., 133 

Seeds of Kindness, 4 v., 32 /., 139 

Summer, 4 z\, 24 /. 143 

The Village School-master, n v., 44 /., 5 

The Report of the Hours, 8 z'., 32 /., 8 

Two Sinners, 4 z/., 28 /., . . . 12 

The Hand For Me, 3 v., 24 /., 16 

The Conceited Grasshopper, 6 v., 24 /., 26 

The World is What You Make It, 3 v., 24 /. 29 

Taking Aim, 5 v., 40 /., 34 

The Light That is Felt, 3 v., 15 / 39 

The Batchelor's Lament, 8 v., 32 /. {for a young man), . . 43 

The Better Way, 1 v., 18 /., 44 

The Two Workers, 4 v., 32 /., 45 

The Human Body, 13 v., 52 /., 48 



INDEX. 175 



Page 

The Voice of All, 4 v., 32 /. {for a young man), 50 

Truth, 1 z\, 16 /., . 51 

Thoughts After School, 10 v., 80 /. {for a teacher), .... 52 

Take a Drink, 3 v., 18 /. {for a boy), 59 

That Vicious Old Bucket, 3 v., 30 /. {for a young man), . . 65 

The School-master's Grave, 8 v., 64 /., 74 

The Year's Autobiography, 13 v., 104 /. {for tivelve little 

girls), 78 

The Conduct of Life, 8 v., 32 /., 89 

The Setting Sun, 4 v., 16 /. {for a little child), 107 

The Fame That I Am Seeking, 9 v., 36 /., 122 

The Old Tree, 11 v., 44 /., 123 

Throwing Kisses, 3 v., 12 /. {for a very little girl), . . . 125 

The Father's House, 12 v., 48 /., 137 

The Best Beauty, 3 v., 24 /., . 140 

The William Goat, 5 v., 20 /., 150 

To the Boys, 4 v., 32 /., . . 152 

The Price of a Drink, 5 v., 50 /., 162 

The Impossible, 8 v., 24 /., 164 

Thoughts on Beauty, 3 v., 20 /., 166 

The Rainbow, 6 v., 48 /., 167 

Voices, 3 v., 12 /., 47 

Vacation Days are Near, 4 v., 20 /., 54 

Wife and I, 5 v., 40 /. {for a young man), 32 

We Little Boys, 3 v., 12 /. (_/#r a /z7//<? boy) 35 

Wanted, t, 2'., 12 I. {for a boy), . 47 

What to Drink, 1 v., 8 /. {for a very little boy), 50 

What to Dig For, 8 v., 32 /. {for two little boys), .... 113 
Wife Wanted, 1 v., 15 /. {for a young lady), . . .... 115 

Which is Best, 6 z'.,48 /. {for six little girls), 115 

Woman's Sphere, ,"i v., 9 /. {for a little girl), 121 

When Santa Claus Comes, 6 v., 24 /., 146 



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